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A long time ago I took a look at a Superman “Which Way” book, a book that you don’t read like a normal book. Instead of reading straight through at different points you’re asked to make a choice and turn to a page connected to that choice. Your decision affected the flow of the story. This is part of a form of book known as a “gamebook”, and while many other publishers have produced them the most famous is the Choose Your Own Adventure series, originally published by Bantam Books as a continuation of Vermont Crossroad Press’ “Adventures Of You” series. Author Edward Packard, who created the Adventures Of You and Choose Your Own Adventure series, was inspired by stories he told his daughters, according to an interview in the Beaver County Times.

I had a character named Pete and I usually had him encountering all these different adventures on an isolated island. But that night I was running out of things for Pete to do, so I just asked what they would do.” His two daughters came up with different paths for the story to take and Packard thought up an ending for each of the paths. “What really struck me was the natural enthusiasm they had for the idea. And I thought: ‘Could I write this down?'”

Nowadays Packard has a new series called U-Ventures while the Choose Your Own Adventure brand is now owned by Chooseco. However, it’s only part of a larger series of these gamebooks, which I talked about on my other site a few days ago. So I thought I would look at the book that introduced me to this form of book that is also a game. Packard’s Hyperspace is the twenty-first book of the original CYOA series and the first one I ever saw. After all this time I don’t remember where I got it or why it appealed to me enough to get it, or if I was even the one who bought it. All I know is I looked almost like the kid on the cover, which got me more into this story than the others I own. Yes, even the one with Superman or the ones with the Transformers.

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