Publication Order of River Heights Books
|Love Times Three||(1989)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Guilty Secrets||(1989)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Going Too Far||(1989)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Stolen Kisses||(1990)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Between the Lines||(1990)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Lessons in Love||(1990)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Cheating Hearts||(1990)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Trouble with Love||(1990)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Lies and Whispers||(1991)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Mixed Emotions||(1991)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Broken Hearts||(1991)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Hard to Handle||(1991)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Junior Class Trip||(1991)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|A Mind of Her Own||(1991)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Love and Games||(1992)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Friends and Rivals||(1992)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|The Jealousy Trap||(1992)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
A spin-off from the ever popular Nancy Drew series, this was a smaller series published by Simon and Schuster. Also going under the pseudonym of Carolyn Keene this was, like the Nancy Drew series before it, another collection of stories set within the same world written by a collection of authors. Although it was a far smaller series in comparison, it still enjoyed a moderate success compared to its forebear. Set in the River Heights High School, it features the neighbor of Nancy Drew, one Nicki Masters as it charts her school life. Leaving behind the detective aspects of the original series, it instead opted for romance, as it looked into the boys in Nicki Masters life at school. Not gaining as much success, it only lasted for sixteen books before being dropped by the publishers who went back to the original franchise.
What it did do was ostensibly open out the world of River Heights, a factor which was further enhanced by Nancy Drew featuring in the prologue of the first book. This was the only time she turned up though, as it then went onto chart the life of it central protagonist Nicki Masters. Although it may not have been as enduring, it still works as a curiosity for those looking to further explore the world of Nancy Drew.
Love Times Three
First published in 1989, this was to be a young adult spin-off of the Nancy Drew series although it was short-lived not receiving the same popularity. Continuing within the world of the Nancy Drew novels, it features her in the prologue before allowing the characters to carry on by themselves. Taking place in the local high-school of River Heights, it features more romance in and around the local area.
Introducing Nikki Masters as a character in her own right, it seeks to establish her as a personality independent from the original franchise. Having appeared before in the Nancy Drew novels, she featured in a mystery whereby Nancy sought to clear her boyfriend’s name of murder. After the introduction from Nancy herself in the prologue, she begins her own adventures both in and around the environment of River Heights High-School. With these books also being set in high-school, it then stands to reason that many of her classmates will also feature heavily in the narrative. Turning up to not only help Nikki, but to also pose as obstacles, they manage to push the plot along, further enhancing the central protagonist. Many of these are friends and confidantes who help her, whilst there are also boys she is interested in as well, all seeking to replicate the high-school experience as best as possible. Finally there’s River Heights High-School which is a character unto itself, providing an artificial fictional environment that replicates well many real-life American high-schools.
Picking up from the events of the Nancy Drew mystery, Nikki is still shocked somewhat by the events of that summer after returning to school. She may have had her name cleared of murder, but that still hasn’t stopped people talking around the school about what happened. It seems she will never regain her former popularity, or be able to find love again, that is until new boy Tim Cooper steps onto the scene. Will she be able to regain her former glory and be able to gain the trust of her fellow classmates once more? Can she ever love again and will she be able to gain the affection of Tim Cooper, as does he even notice her? What will become of the other popular girl Brittany and what is she scheming for them both as love times three?
Set as the follow-up to the original novel, this was also initially published in 1989 carrying on directly from where the last left off. Developing the character of Nikki Masters further than before, it continues to show her as a personality in her own right independent from the Nancy Drew franchise. Here the story is already fully established, along with both the set-up and the tone, as it works on the environment of the high-school.
With the character of Nikki Masters now fully established as a central protagonist in of herself, this book was set to develop her even further. Having managed to bring in and set-up the premise already, it now launches straight into the action giving a story right away. This also leads to the character of Nikki Masters, as she seems to have it all with her brains, beauty and popularity. Many of her classmates return from the former novel, along with a number of her old rivals as well looking to create conflict. All this along with boyfriend trouble, as her love interest Tim now also features more heavily in the overall narrative. The teachers as well provide an overbearing sense of authority too, looking down upon the action, or not as the case might sometimes be. River Heights High-School continues to be the focal point of all the action, thus determining the course of the many books to come.
With a new car and a new boyfriend everything seems to be going well for Nikki Masters now these days. That’s when Tim starts to mysteriously acting all cool towards her seeming disinterested and distant leaving her wondering what’s wrong. She’s then left to manage the upcoming big parade, as it is up to her to supervise the floats there, which adds to the pressure. Will she be able to save her relationship with Tim? Can she get everything ready for the big day? What will become of them all as they learn of some guilty secrets?
The River Heights Series
Lasting for a maximum of only sixteen books, it still acts as a curiosity for fans of the Nancy Drew looking to further explore the world. This is despite them aiming for a more traditional set of high-school themed romance novels that was in stark contrast to Drew’s detective skills. Further enhancing the world of Nancy Drew, Nick Masters alternative take on the environment there helps to enhance it further. This ensures that this has become a definite must for any fans of the franchise, or anybody looking to get a distinctive take on the high-school romance genre at the time.Book Series In Order » Characters » River Heights