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Sabotage

Series: Choose Your Own Adventure (1979-1998) #38
Translated Into: Baadaahofu-jou kyuushutsu sakusen [バーダーホフ城救出作戦] (Japanese)
Eres un agente secreto contra los nazis (Spanish)
Sabotage (Danish)
Sabotagem (Portuguese)
Sabotaia (Basque)
Sabotaje (Spanish)
Sabotatge (Catalan)
Author: Leibold, Jay (pseudonym used by Montavon, Jay)
Illustrator: Reese, Ralph
Release Date: November, 1984
ISBNs: 0553245252 / 9780553245257
0553258605 / 9780553258608
Length:132 pages
Number of Endings:39
User Summary: You are a secret agent during World War II, and you must rescue two of your friends from a Nazi-held castle.
Demian's Thoughts: I quite enjoyed reading this book even though it has some serious flaws. On the positive side, the book is exciting and contains quite a few interesting choices and one or two genuinely surprising plot twists. Unfortunately, the book is hampered a bit by its writing style, which is rather unengaging and not nearly as detailed or well-written as, say, a Time Machine book. Additionally, even though this is one of the longest books in the series up to this point, it has a number of endings that just trail off in a frustrating manner. Better to have a "you're dead" ending than a "you're alive but we're not going to tell you what happens next" ending. Despite these flaws, though, the book is definitely worth reading.

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Good's Thoughts: It's great! I am glad the book is not limited to 118 pages, like most of them are. Raoul's secret is easily findable. Nazi escape is easier the more you read, and a few times, you escape by trusting Raoul.
There's lots about history here, but each character is perfected.
Spy For George Washington, Fight for Freedom, and Grand Canyon Odyssey are his other greats.

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MrEndshiftresign's Thoughts: A-

Despite the high number of endings (39) even for an older CYOA book, this has always been one of my favorites. The story is fast-paced and exciting, has a lot of interesting and challenging choices, and while it may not take long for an adult first-time reader to figure out that Raoul is a double agent, DeGrelle had me in for some suspense when I first read this as a kid. I agree with yunakitty's observation that bad guy Herr Kruptsch always seems to be a step behind you no matter what choice you take, and that gives him a bit of a comical bad guy effect, rather than being a Hitler-influenced character. Still, this is a book for younger readers, and I also agree this is minor nitpicking. This is Jay Leibold/Montavon's best CYOA ever (also see Grand Canyon Odyssey for more good Leibold/Montavon writing) and is still quite enjoyable to read even for adult readers.

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yunakitty's Thoughts: I really enjoyed this one. Jay Leibold writes a lot of historical CYOA's like Spy for George Washington. And even though I'm not really into history, this was well written enough that it held my attention all the way to the end (all 39 of them!). There were a lot of twists and turns to the story, and the characters are engaging, as much as you will get in a gamebook at any rate!

Odd little thing: I actually made a mistake when I started out... from page 3 I went to page 4 instead of page 5 like I was supposed to. It pushed me several choices ahead in the story, but I didn't realize until I had exhausted that whole trail and realized I had seen pictures while flipping that I never got to while reading. It was then I discovered my mistake and was able to finish the rest of the book. But even with that, I felt like I had gotten my money's worth so to speak out of the book! I wonder if anyone else has made this mistake... it did feel like the story jumped a little bit, but that's something you see pretty often in these books to save space, so I thought nothing of it.

Minor nitpicking here... the big baddie seems to be everywhere too conveniently. Really? He's waiting for you when you wake up at a farmhouse? Yes, I understand that you have a traitor in your midst that finagled it so you would be forced to be there, but why not just push you off a cliff? Oh wait, the traitor does do that in effect in one of the bad endings.

Also, not sure why it is called Sabotage and not something else... Adventure in the Alps... Spy Mission... something. There is some sabotage that you can do, but it turns out kind of crappy. You end up blowing yourself up more often than not. Whoops.

Still, great book. Four out of five stars.

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