The Mystery in Dracula’s Castle by Vic Crume, 1973.
This is a novelization of a live action Disney movie of the same name and contains photographs of scenes from the movie. The title of the book and the movie is a little misleading because, although the main characters are unaware of what is going on for most of the story, the audience finds out pretty quickly who the bad guys are and what they’re doing. In a way, it’s kind of like a Columbo story where the suspense is in watching the hero figure it all out. Also, there is no real castle or Dracula. Sorry. 😦 In spite of these short-comings, it’s still a fun story, and although the movie has not been released on dvd, it is possible to see it on YouTube (as of this writing).
Alfie and Leonard are spending yet another summer at their family’s beach house in a small town while their mother works on the new book she’s writing. They think this summer is going to be dull, but with jewel thieves in town, it soon becomes apparent that it’s anything but!
Alfie is an aspiring film maker. Specifically, he wants to make horror movies, and he talks his younger brother into playing the part of Dracula in his latest Super 8 film. Leonard is only a reluctant vampire because he doesn’t like horror movies. He really wants to be a detective, like Sherlock Holmes. Back home, he and his brother saw police investigating the scene of a robbery at a jewelry store, and he’s decided that he wants to investigate crimes like that. Soon after they arrive at the beach house, Leonard adopts a stray dog and names him Watson so that he can be his sidekick.
Alfie laughs at his brother’s detective fantasies, but Leonard gets his chance to prove himself when they become involved with the thieves who robbed the jewelry store. The location that Alfie has picked for his movie is an old lighthouse, which he thinks looks like Dracula’s castle, and that is where the thieves are staying. With the sheriff’s daughter acting as their baby-sitter and the heroine of their film and the necklace ending up in Leonard’s hands by accident, the thieves struggle to get it back before Leonard realizes what it is and where it came from.