THE FIRST BOOK, AND OTHER FAVOURITES
Inspired by Conrad
Sugarcane Island was the first interactive book that Packard, who trained as a lawyer, ever wrote. In 1975, it was released by a small publishing house, and eventually became title number one in the Choose Your Own Adventure series.
Unsurprisingly, ask Packard about his favourite books in the canon, and that simple story of exploration and adventure is right near the top. “Sugarcane Island was special, of course,” he tells you. “It was clearly inspired by Robinson Crusoe and Treasure Island, my two favorite books as a kid. [But there are other favourites.] For adventures: taking it to the limit is not only visiting another planet, but another universe, and the way to get there is Through the Black Hole, a book inspired by my longstanding interest in outer space and cosmology.
“Another book I think is special is Typhoon,” he continues. “This was a natural because I’ve been a life-long sailor and lover of the sea, and I think that experiencing a typhoon in a sailboat would be a huge adventure; it could also be a fatal one, but that’s not a problem in interactive adventure fiction. This book was inspired in part by Joseph Conrad’s great novella with the same title.”
Angered by this reference, the skeletal ghost of Joseph Conrad yanks himself from his grave and races towards you, shedding loose dirt and shaking a bony finger in your direction. Do you invite him to join you in reading about STRUCTURAL EXPERIMENTS?, or fight him off – using VIOLENCE?