Wednesday, 10 November 2010

The Mystery Of The Silver Spider

Following a near accident, the boys are invited to the principality of Varania, to help Prince Djaro discover the location of the fabled Silver Spider, which has been stolen. Bert Young, a secret service agent, also recruits them as it’s feared the Prince Regent is plotting to overthrow Djaro and make Varania a crooks paradise. Told at breakneck pace, this has high adventure, mystery, daring escapes, a couple of bumps on the head for Bob and a thrilling climax. Superb stuff.

One of the last books in the series I bought, I found this by chance on a stall at a car boot sale in Kettering. I got the 1979 edition and loved the cover (below left). Years later, when I was making the bulk of my collection the 1982/1983 edition printings, I got hold of that version of this (below right). I love that cover as well. So, which is best?


  1. When I look at online polls, I'm surprised to see that this one invariably ranks as the least appreciated of the Robert Arthur stories. Maybe American readers can't identify with a country having a royal family. As I said when commenting on Haunted Mirror, I'm not a big fan of invented countries, but this one works well because we actually go there. A cunning prince regent, the opposition Minstrels, international espionage, a dramatic escape through the tunnels... all add up to a great story. Ten out of ten.

  2. Do you think it's the identifying with the royal family bit? Maybe that's why it's easier for a UK reader?

  3. I've just finished rereading this and it's great.