The Secret of Terror Castle

The Secret of Terror Castle by Robert Arthur (1964) This is the first book of the “Alfred Hitchcock and The Three Investigators” series—with a fictional version of Hitchcock “introducing” each adventure as if they are real people—kind of a clever idea. The three Southern California based boy detectives are a little annoying, though their leader, Jupiter Jones, a young version of Sherlock Holmes is kind of irresistible, as is their headquarters, a secret hideout buried (with multiple, imaginative, secret entrances) in the family junkyard where Jupiter lives and works. The earlier books, written by Robert Arthur, are best; later there would be other authors, but I have not read them all, so maybe there are some interesting gems later on. This is one of my favorites, about some eccentrics “haunting” a rustic castle in order to scare away meddlers—pretty much classic Scooby-Doo.