This book was sent to me by my good friend David “Big Mac” Shepheard who is a fellow Spelljammer enthusiast. He was eager that I should read it before our Rock of Bral themed issue came out on our new project Wildspace: The Spelljammer Fanzine, since it takes place at that location.
I’m always happy about anything Spelljammer because I love the setting, and as far as “Choose Your Own Adventure” type books go (this is part of a series called “Endless Quest,”) it’s pretty fun. I used to quite enjoy that type of thing as a child, when your choice directly affects the outcome of the story. I like the characters and I like the villains. The illustrations are awesome! And I’m grateful for the gift.
It obviously wasn’t designed for grown ups, however, and this is telling in that there are a lot of stereotypes and the overall tone is preachy (real heroes are always brave; real heroes always do the right thing, etc.) For that reason, sometimes it felt as though the plot “railroaded” you. For instance, the author assumes you’re going to choose to help the people who come in and ask you about a broach they found. But you’re supposed to be a treasure hunter. Why don’t they give you the option to say, “Blow it out your shorts!” or even just, “What’s in it for me?” And you can pretty much be assured that if the action would be the “right” thing to do, either for bravery, benevolence, honesty, etc., then that’s what’s going to get you through the adventure alive and accomplish your goals. The writing is also downright *bad* in its boy-scout, do-right campiness in places, I have to admit.
All in all, it was worth reading once because I did enjoy it, and I will hold onto it for my collection because I keep all my Spelljammer books (because I just might need the reference) but I will not likely pick it up again for many years, and were it not for the fact that it is a Spelljammer book I would probably trade it in at my bookstore. However, I’m willing to make some allowances because it also managed to be funny and entertaining, and entertainment is ultimately why we read books. Worth having a look at; at least once.