Remember those books? I think it was the only time I “lost” a book from the library and couldn’t return it. The one where you’re a spy.
In an effort to read more to Sal, I picked up some of these little gems from Amazon. They have a younger kids version of the books and so far I think they’re a hit. Like the reviews of the books say, there are some strange endings to some of the paths (like spending a good portion of your life in jail, or getting stuck on a robot planet without ever seeing your parents again), but that hasn’t been too much of an issue. (Update – while making those amazon links, I stumbled upon this choose your own adventure…which seems like it strays a little from their typical recipe. Browse through the first few pages and tell me if this is the choose your own adventure genre you grew up with – there isn’t a decision point in the first couple of pages, but that first page definitely stands out…I might be getting myself a choose your own adventure book too now.)
What is strange is that Sal will choose the “right” thing to do. He hears a little magical “help!” coming from his sand castle late at night and you ask him if he’s going to go investigate the castle right away or if he’ll wait till morning and he’ll think about it and then wait until morning. And if he’s got the choice of going to do something himself right away or to go get help or his parents, he’ll go find help or his parents.
So I’m pleased that he does the “right” thing – cause I’m superimposing that onto how he’d react to that situation in real life. Considering how long he thinks about some of his choices, I think he does take it seriously.
But I’m a little sad that he’s not more “adventurous”. We haven’t been able to find the sea monster in some lake, cause we keep going the safe route. Though, I don’t want to push him that way and then end up having a kid that is out of control in real life. I like knowing he’s not going to run out of the house in the middle of the night cause he thinks he hears something.
So we’ve had to swap roles. Sometimes I get to choose the adventure and my character is the one that ends up being the reckless one and he hears about the adventures that I go on (I’m the one that went to jail, not him. He found some emeralds that were stolen years ago and returned them to the police…) Though sometimes I end up with happy endings too. Ahem.
So overall, I think it’s been a success. He leafs through the books while I’m at work and he knows that there are pages/pictures of the story that he wants to get to, but we don’t always figure out the path. When he learns how to reverse engineer the story, I’ll be impressed.
I think this week, while his mom is away, we’ll work on writing our own choose your own adventure book for her to read…