Choose-your-own-adventure books are not exactly the cornerstone of the literary industry. Despite seeing a modicum of success in the children’s market of decades past, the genre is well beyond its prime. However, author Frederick Respin is looking to change all that.
Respin is the author of two previous choose-your-own-adventure books (Pick Your Perilous Path and Botch Your Own Surgery!), neither of which saw much success. With Choose Your Own Life, though, he seems to have struck gold.
The secret is in the book’s mundane nature. While most adventure books will whisk the reader away on a fantastical journey, Respin chooses a more humble approach. The events and choices in the book are ones that the reader could realistically experience in his own life. Eating breakfast, going to work, staring off into space, et cetera. All of these are moments that the book delves quite deeply into, and they are near-prefect reflections of real life. There are of course twists and turns, but they flow so naturally into the narrative that it all feels right.
The biggest strength of Choose Your Own Life is that it deals with real world issues in a plausible, personal way that really makes the story come to life for each individual reader. So jump on in and enjoy the ride, whatever you may choose that to be!
8.5 out of 10
You awake in the early morning, feeling refreshed and alert as you always do. However, today there is extra spring in your step and pep in your breath. After all, today is the big day!
Excitedly, you do your daily ninety push-ups, crunches, squats, and bicycle kicks. With exercise out of the way, you jump in the shower and gently lather up your rigid abs and/or feminine curves. You take a bit longer than normal because you want to make certain that you are as clean as possible. You turn the water off and hurriedly towel dry, walking damp and nude over to your bathroom sink.
After examining your finely-honed body in the mirror for a while, you put on your very best dress clothes. Nothing less on a day like today! You go to the kitchen and fix yourself a hearty breakfast with just the right amount of all the food groups. You even have half a grapefruit.
You brush your teeth for exactly four and a half minutes. Then you are on your way! Out the door and onto the street you go, practically skipping with every step. You wave enthusiastically to all the neighbors, and your good mood proves infectious. They smile back at you, happy because they know what today means for you.
Birds cheerfully chirp their songs above you as sunlight dances through the tree leaves. Crisp gravel crunches beneath your feet as you make your way to your clean and shiny car. You push a button on your key remote and your car unlocks with a pleasant beep, as if to say “Hi there!” in a peppy Disney falsetto.
“Hi car!” you say back. People smile at you as if this is completely normal.
You open the car door and relish another big breath of fresh air before hopping in your car. You grin to yourself as you feel the exquisite leather seats press against you. You bought this car just a couple of months ago, and if all goes according to plan today you should soon have it paid off in full!
You turn your key, starting your car. Then it all sinks in. This is it! What you have been anticipating for so long! Today is the day you finally get…
A promotion! Turn to page 105.
Your lottery winnings! Turn to page 428.
Brutally murdered! Turn to page 3.