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A Hardy Boys Mystery Best Left Unsolved

October 06, 1998

I have just finished reading Gene Weingarten's article on the Hardy Boys (Life & Style, Sept. 8) and was saddened to learn that Mr. McFarlane, the ghost writer of the Hardy Boys, actually despised having to write about them. It was something I neither wanted nor needed to know.

Like most kids growing up in the mid-1960s, I read every Hardy Boys mystery book that I could get my hands on. If there wasn't one around, I would satisfy myself with the adventures of Tom Swift, Encyclopedia Brown or (oh, the shame) my older sister's Nancy Drew books, but the Hardy Boys were my favorite. Frank, Joe and Fenton Hardy, Aunt Gertrude, Chet Morton and Biff. The Hardy Boys were my friends and heroes, besting villains--adults and teenagers alike.

Mr. McFarlane sounds like a wonderful family man and a gifted writer. It truly is a pity that he never appreciated just how much joy he brought to so many homes, how many of his books were read by flashlight under the covers, and how many generations of us he profoundly affected and entertained for so many years.

Mr. Weingarten writes of his fond memories of the Hardy Boys. I suspect that he is not particularly happy with having solved this particular mystery.

ROBERT F. HINTON

Los Angeles

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