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Choose Your Own Adventure (1979-1998)
Choose Your Own Adventure (2005-) — no. 4
Choose Your Own Adventure Reissues (Australian Versions) — no. 4
Lost Jewels of Nabooti
The Lost Jewels (reissue)
Choose Your Own Adventure Box Set 1 (1-4) (Collection)
Choose Your Own Adventure Box Set 2 (6-10) (Collection)
Choose Your Own Adventure Epic Collection (Collection)
Choose Your Own Adventure Reissues Box Set (1-5) (Collection)
Die Verlore juwele van Nabooti (Afrikaans)
I gioielli perduti di Nabooti (Italian)
As jóias de Nabuti (Portuguese)
As jóias perdidas de Nabooti (Portuguese)
Les joies perdudes de Nabooti (Catalan)
Las joyas perdidas de Nabooti (Spanish)
Las joyas perdidas de Nabooti (Spanish)
Las joyas perdidas de Nabuti (Spanish)
Die Juwelen von Nabooti (German)
Nabuuti no houseki satsujin jiken [ナブーティの宝石殺人事件] (Japanese)
Permata Naboti (Indonesian)
De verdwenen juwelen van Naboeti (Dutch)
Verschwundene Juwelen (German)
Wànnéng Bǎoshí [萬能寶石] (Chinese)
The Jewels of Nabooti (Graded Reader) (Gamebook)
Montgomery, R. A.
(pseudonym used by Hedin, Don)
(Original edition, third printing; Original version, retitled edition - interior; Original edition, sixth printing; Original edition, fifth printing; Original edition, first printing)
McBride, Marc (Australian edition - cover)
Saffioti, Lino (Original version, retitled edition - cover)
Utomo, Gabhor (ChooseCo reissue edition - cover; ChooseCo reissue edition, sixth printing - cover; ChooseCo reissue edition with online ending badge - cover; ChooseCo reissue edition, thirteenth printing - cover)
Kornmaneeroj, Thananart (ChooseCo reissue edition; Australian edition; ChooseCo reissue edition, sixth printing; ChooseCo reissue edition with online ending badge; ChooseCo reissue edition, thirteenth printing)
Chanchareon, Kachaine (ChooseCo reissue edition; Australian edition; ChooseCo reissue edition, sixth printing; ChooseCo reissue edition with online ending badge; ChooseCo reissue edition, thirteenth printing)
Butsingkhon, Sorasith (ChooseCo reissue edition; Australian edition; ChooseCo reissue edition, sixth printing; ChooseCo reissue edition with online ending badge; ChooseCo reissue edition, thirteenth printing)
Utahigarn, Atthakrit (ChooseCo reissue edition; Australian edition; ChooseCo reissue edition, sixth printing; ChooseCo reissue edition with online ending badge; ChooseCo reissue edition, thirteenth printing)
March, 1981 (Original edition, first printing)
July, 1981 (Original edition, third printing)
May, 1982 (Original edition, fifth printing)
August, 1982 (Original edition, sixth printing)
August, 1989 (Original version, retitled edition)
2005 (ChooseCo reissue edition)
2006 (Australian edition)
0553143581 / 9780553143584
(Original edition, third printing)
0553209833 / 9780553209839 (Original edition, fifth printing)
0553232312 / 9780553232318 (Original edition, sixth printing)
0553259121 / 9780553259124 (Original version, retitled edition)
1865049255 / 9781865049250 (Australian edition)
1933390042 / 9781933390048 (ChooseCo reissue edition, ChooseCo reissue edition, sixth printing, ChooseCo reissue edition with online ending badge, ChooseCo reissue edition, thirteenth printing)
121 pages (Original edition, first printing, Original edition, third printing, Original edition, fifth printing, Original edition, sixth printing, Original version, retitled edition)
131 pages (ChooseCo reissue edition, ChooseCo reissue edition with online ending badge, ChooseCo reissue edition, sixth printing, ChooseCo reissue edition, thirteenth printing)
|Number of Endings:||
38 (incorrectly listed as 36 on cover) (Original edition, first printing, Original edition, third printing, Original edition, fifth printing, Original edition, sixth printing)
38 (Original version, retitled edition, ChooseCo reissue edition, ChooseCo reissue edition with online ending badge, ChooseCo reissue edition, sixth printing, ChooseCo reissue edition, thirteenth printing, Australian edition)
US$1.75 (Original edition, fifth printing)
|LC Cataloging in Publication Summary:||Jewels have disappeared from a museum show in Paris. Can you find them? By choosing specific pages, you determine the outcome.|
|User Summary:||Your cousins Peter and Lucy ask for your help in finding the magical jewels of Nabooti.|
Sadly, this is a rather weak entry in the series. The writing is pretty awful and the story's not really too interesting (though it had the potential to be a lot better).
Hard to get better than total randomness filled with jewel searching. 8.5/10
The plot twists in a fun way! The worst death, to start, is the explosive dog. There's other things too: A rock band with a funny name, unpredictable characters, a rug merchant (yes, there's one way to find him) and many ways to find the jewels. The rating is probably because I've read it a lot, or it would have been 10/10.
(Review based on the Spanish (Timun Mas) translation).
If you follow my reviews, you'll know that I'm usually the guy who loves books everyone else hates. In this case, however, I have no choice but to agree wholeheartedly with the negative reviews posted here. During my first read-throughs I hoped the book would have some deep, interesting single plot, but the backstory changes wildly depending on the choices you make. This wouldn't be a problem if the author had cared to develop the plot a little bit in at least some of the paths included; however, every single one of the paths - even the successful ones - is frustratingly vague about what is going on or the motivations of the non-player characters. Add to this the complete absence of strategic gameplay and the fact that all storylines are extremely short, and you have a frustrating mess of a gamebook that appears like it was written by an eighth-grader. The book is so amateurish I wouldn't be surprised to learn it was the first one written by the author (even if it appeared later than others in the series). This should never have been published, let alone reissued. It still has historical significance in that it is among the earliest gamebooks to include atypical choices (such as "what do you want to happen next?" or "what do you believe just happened?" instead of "what will you do next?"). This doesn't improve the experience much, though.
Are we ready for some early R. A. Montgomery? The Lost Jewels of Nabooti isn't his weirdest gamebook, but it has its moments. New Orleans, Louisiana: you are on summer vacation when a telegram arrives from your cousins Peter and Lucy in Boston. The Jewels of Nabooti--two diamonds and two rubies their father purchased years ago from a Moroccan merchant named Abdul Said--have been stolen. When their father died a while back, he made Peter and Lucy promise to "Protect the jewels at all costs." He believed the jewels held strange powers that could change the course of mankind's future. Over the years he received threatening messages demanding the jewels be returned to the Nabooti tribe in Africa, but he refused. Peter and Lucy don't know who has taken the jewels, but they refuse to let the perpetrator get away with it, and they need your help. The mission is dangerous--an anonymous person or group uses aggressive intimidation tactics against you more than once before you're even able to meet up with your cousins and hear the full story--but you're not easily deterred. Are you ready to hop a plane to Paris in pursuit of your first solid lead?
You can solicit the help of an old friend like Beech Muzzwell, a private detective, but for the most part in these pages you're on your own. You are bound to be surveilled wherever you go; on the plane to Paris a mustachioed man tries to secretly ally with you, but can you trust him? The steady stream of violent threats aimed your way is coming from somewhere, and this man may have bad intentions. At the Paris airport a strange man and woman demand you come with them to Morocco; if you refuse, you are framed as a smuggler and detained by the French police. Will they believe you if you tell them the truth about the Jewels of Nabooti? The authorities can offer only so much protection, and once you set foot in Morocco you'll be taking your life in your hands. Will you carry a firearm to defend yourself, or trust your wits to do the job? You may wind up locating the jewels with ease, or dying at the hands of terrorists. Even if you're savvy, the results are mostly luck.
If you go with the man you met on the plane to Paris you may meet an African operative named Molotawa who has a connection to the Nabooti tribe. You're on the trail of something big, as indicated by a flurry of attempts on your life. The police are usually willing to assist if you tell them about the jewels, but they can't direct your mission. Should you arrange a meeting with the Nabooti tribe near Lake Chad in Africa? Would they welcome you...or surround your aircraft with guns? How you react in a hostile situation may be the difference between triumph and death. Consulting a shaman will send you to the Mountains of the Moon or the Zaire River; there are multiple pathways to a positive ending. Are the jewels in Paris, Morocco, or back in Boston? Are you willing to risk death to retrieve them for Peter and Lucy? If you survive all the explosions and bullets to end up with the jewels, you may be able to use them to forward the cause of world peace in a way not previously possible. It makes these past few stressful days worth the sacrifice.
The Lost Jewels of Nabooti can't be categorized as a success. The story is all over the place, internally consistent only on rare occasions, and most paths end abruptly with no degree of satisfaction. There could have been an elegant overarching narrative that all sub-plots neatly fit within, but instead we get a poorly executed concept with minimal imagination and seemingly no effort to do better. The book isn't exactly boring, so I'll consider rating it one and a half stars, but R. A. Montgomery is capable of a lot better.
|Waluigi Freak 99's Thoughts:||
For one thing, the writing was mostly unintelligible, and it proved difficult to try to guess what was happening to your character. I gave up reading after a couple of choices; something I rarely do with gamebooks unless they truly disappoint me. Then there was the tone. This book just didn't take itself seriously enough. Phrases like "TOO BAD!" should not be used to describe being killed in a terrorist's bomb, and goofy sound effects like "ZONK!" to describe a lightning strike just didn't seem to fit in with the story. Probably the only thing that stands out to me as memorable about this book was the death ending on page 78. I guess I was just in the mood for sick, twisted humor when I read it, however, one page is hardly enough to carry the weight of a disappointing book.
I concur that this is one of the worst CYOAs. I noticed that there are 36 endings in a 121 page book. You can do the math and figure out that it isn't a very good story to ending ratio. And the endings! They are so short and abrupt, and often have nothing to do with what's been happening. This book feel like the author was rushed and just couldn't be bothered to write proper endings. An example is the storyline where you head to Paris and you eventually get a police escort. While in the restaurant, you are slipped a note saying to go outside. If you don't, your police escort walks up behind you and puts a packet in your lap that contains the jewels, crushed to a powder! You fail! If you do go outside, you have the choice of continuing on to the Eiffel Tower, or going back. If you go back, you are treated to the shortest ending ever where you are admonished for giving up and it says "TOO BAD!" If you do go to the Eiffel Tower, you get a nonsensical paragraph about looking down on the twinkling lights of Paris, and some hogwash about the jewels being where you find them - wherever you look. THE END.
Um, okay. It just seemed like a whole lot of work, introducing characters and setting up situations, to just end with "Well, that didn't work out."
I'm also not fond of gamebooks that change characters' personalities on different readthroughs. I like to feel like my reading has given me knowledge I can use to better solve the puzzle next time. I guess you could argue that changing good guys to bad guys in subsequent plotlines keeps it fresh, but I'm not so sure. Also, this game has plenty of Choice A: Go. Choice B: Wait. That's fine, but don't you dare have Choice A lead to "The whole building blows up. The End." and then have choice B say. "You wait and weigh your options. A man approaches you.... blah blah continue with story." That's just aggravating. Why didn't it blow me up in choice B too? Bah. I could barely finish this book, but my love of CYOA compelled me forward until I had read every last ending. Avoid this unless you get it for free or something.
|Special Thanks:||Thanks to Ken G. for the 1989 reissue cover scan and to Adam Osman for the Australian cover scans.|
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