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Tom Swift and His Electric Runabout

Victor Appleton

Book Overview: 

Tom Swift enters an upcoming race with his specially-designed prototype electric race car. But as he makes the final preparations and adjustments, days before the race, he discovers a plot that would bankrupt not only his family, but also everyone else that relies on the local bank (which is the target of a nefarious bank-run scheme). Tom must solve the mystery and stop the criminals behind the plot before he’ll test himself on a 500 mile race against some of the best electric cars and skilled drivers in the United States. Listeners are forewarned that some elements and characters included in Tom Swift books portray certain ethnic groups in a very dated manner that modern readers, and listeners, may find offensive. Despite the racially stereotyped behavior and pronunciation in the books, the Reader believes it makes sense to read what’s written in order to be faithful to the author’s intent.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .I'm a little worried."

"Say, don't let it worry you," begged Tom, earnestly.

"Why not?"

"Because I know my father and Mr. Damon will stick to the old bank. They won't have anything to do with the one Andy Foger's father starts. Don't you worry."

"Well, that will help some," declared Ned. "They are both heavy depositors, and if they stick to the old bank we can stand it even if some of our smaller customers desert us."

"That's the way to talk," went on the young inventor. "Let Foger start his bank. It won't hurt yours."

"What are you making now?" asked Ned, a little later, looking with interest at the machinery over which Tom was bending, and to which he was making adjustments.

"New electric automobile. I want to beat Andy Foger's car worse than I did on my motor-cycle, and I also want to win a prize," and the lad proceeded to relate the incidents leading up to his construction of . . . Read More

Community Reviews

I was a huge fan of Tom Swift Jr. since receiving Tom Swift Jr. and the Race to the Moon for Christmas at age 8. Imagine my surprise when I discovered at my grandmother's house some copies of the original Tom Swift from the first couple decades of the 20th century. And the writing style was just...more

I read the Tom Swift Sr. books as a child and again when I got my Kindle in 2010. They are an easy read and enjoyable. It is interesting to see how writing has changed since these books were written.

Wow! What an exciting book as Tom Swift builds an electric runabout that goes over 100 mi./h, Boyles the bad guys, and gets the girl.

6 out of 10

This is one of my favorite books, it was written over 100 years ago, yet the science and engineering in the book are still problems that we face today especially with electric vehicles. There is dated language, but other than that it is a great book. For a fun project I abridged and edited the bo...more

Fun from early in the twentieth century as young inventor Tom Swift builds an electrical car to participate in a race of similar cars. Along the way our young hero battles bullies from previous novels who seek revenge, plots to sabotage his creation, and a bank seeking to ruin the one he and his...more

Really good old classic young readers book about a young inventor that invents this awesome inventions and then goes on these wild and crazy adventures, sometimes getting into trouble in the process.

Excellent Tom Swift novel, again with more pulp adventure aspects than the earlier stories. Still dated, but an enjoyable read!