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Item - Flame of the Inquisition

Series: Time Machine — no. 15
Platform: Microsoft Reader
Translated Into: Le fiamme dell'inquisizione (Italian)
Plamen inkvizicije (Slovenian)
Author: Kornblatt, Marc
Illustrators: Rivoche, Paul (cover)
Pierard, John (interior)
Date: December, 1986
ISBN: 0553261606 / 9780553261608
Length: 124 pages (plus data bank and data file)
Number of Endings: 1
User Summary: You travel back in time to discover why the famously kind and sensitive Queen Isabella permitted the Spanish Inquisition to take place.
Demian's Thoughts: This book is quite good; it takes a refreshingly direct approach to an ugly topic, and it doesn't sweeten things excessively just because it's a children's book. Its storyline is also nicely constructed, allowing all of its pieces to fall into place in a satisfying manner even though they are revealed non-linearly. All of this is helped by the attractively-shaded illustrations, which are a nice change of pace from the line drawings found in so many gamebooks. Like some other books in the series, this one requires the reader to select an item to take along before beginning the story. Unfortunately, this is the source of the book's biggest flaw -- unless the right item is picked, the book becomes an infinite loop (and yes, I have a map to prove it -- see also Julien Peter Benney's more complete version). This certainly increases the challenge of the book, but it also seems more than a little arbitrary, and it renders later references to different items totally pointless since the reader could not possibly have more than the one necessary object. Perhaps this whole aspect of the book is the result of an error somewhere along the line....

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Related Documents

Structure Diagram

Time Machine #15 Map
Thanks to Julien Peter Benney for contributing this map of the book's structure.