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Series - Choose Your Own Adventure (1979-1998)

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Publishers: Bantam -- United States
Gareth Stevens Publishing -- United States
Grey Castle Press -- United States
Lippincott -- United States
Troll -- United States
Categories: Complexity Level : Basic (No Game System)
Format : Hardback
Format : Paperback
Genre : Adventure
Genre : Contemporary Fiction
Genre : Fantasy
Genre : Historical Fiction
Genre : Horror
Genre : Mystery
Genre : Science Fiction
Genre : Sports Fiction
Genre : Western
Product Family : Choose Your Own Adventure
Target Age Group : Older Children
Writing Style : Present Tense
Writing Style : Second Person
Translated Into: 1000 Gefahren (German)
Adobenchaa Bukkusu [アドベンチャーブックス] (Japanese)
Aukeratu zeure abentura (Basque)
Boken med…olika slut (Swedish)
chā tú běn mí nǐ tàn xiǎn cóng shū [插图本迷你探险丛书] (Chinese)
Choisis ta propre aventure (French)
Choisis ton aventure (French)
Choose Your Own Adventure (Farsi)
Du er hovedpersonen (Danish)
Du und dein Abenteuer (German)
duō chóng jié jú mào xiǎn àn lì [多重結局冒險案例] (Chinese)
Elige tu propia aventura (1981) (Spanish)
Elige tu propia aventura (1983-1998, Argentina) (Spanish)
Elige tu propia aventura (1983-1998, Spain) (Spanish)
ér tóng huí dào guò qù xiǎo shuō xì liè [兒童回到過去小說系列] (Chinese)
ér tóng jí zhì xiǎo shuō xì liè / xīn shì jì jué zé cóng shū [兒童急智小說系列/ 新世紀抉擇叢書] (Chinese)
ér tóng kē huàn xiǎo shuō xì liè [兒童科幻小說系列] (Chinese)
ér tóng kǒng bù xiǎo shuō xì liè / líng huàn zhī lǚ xì liè [兒童恐怖小說系列/ 靈幻之旅系列] (Chinese)
ér tóng mào xiǎn xiǎo shuō xì liè [兒童冒險小說系列] (Chinese)
ér tóng yùn dòng xiǎo shuō xì liè [兒童運動小說系列] (Chinese)
Escolha sua aventura (Portuguese)
Escolhe a tua própria aventura (Portuguese)
Is kahani ke hiro ap hain (Urdu)
Izberi svoeto priklyuchenie! [Избери своето приключение!] (Bulgarian)
jīng xiǎn chà lù kǒu [惊险岔路口] (Chinese)
Kies je eigen avontuur (Dutch)
Kies jou eie avontuur (Afrikaans)
Kimi nara dou suru? [きみならどうする?] (Japanese)
Kraj po vaša želba (Macedonian)
Macera tüneli dizisi (Turkish)
Odaberi svoju pustolovinu (Serbo-Croatian)
Pilih sendiri pengembaraan anda (Malay)
Pilih sendiri petualanganmu (Indonesian)
Scegli la tua avventura (Italian)
Tria la teva aventura (Catalan)
Valitse oma seikkailusi (Finnish)
Vibery sebe priklyucheniye [Выбери себе приключение] (Russian)
Vyber si vlastné dobrodružstvo (Slovakian)
Vyber si vlastní dobrodružství (Czech)
wàng wén shǎo nián zhēn tàn tuī lǐ xiǎo shuō xì liè [旺文少年偵探推理小說系列] (Chinese)
zì wǒ lì xiǎn cóng shū [自我歷險叢書] (Chinese)
zuì xīn shén qí lì xiǎn [最新神奇历险] (Chinese)
Þitt eigið ævintýri (Icelandic)
《mào xiǎn háng dòng jué zé》kē xué huàn xiǎng cóng shū [《冒险行动抉择》科学幻想丛书] (Chinese)

With close to two hundred titles, Choose Your Own Adventure is by far the longest-running gamebook series. It grew out of Edward Packard's Adventures of You Series, with its first manifestation being Lippincott's hardback release of Deadwood City and The Third Planet from Altair which, while not yet officially part of a series, featured the phrase "Choose Your Own Adventure" on the covers. However, it was when Bantam acquired the rights to release the books in paperback starting in 1979 that the series' full potential was realized, and the books almost single-handedly started the American gamebook boom of the eighties. They made less of an impression in England, where The Third Planet from Altair was retitled Exploration Infinity and included in the single-volume Plot-It-Yourself Adventures in Space series and Deadwood City was released as a stand-alone hardback and paperback, but the majority of titles were available only as imports.

The books almost entirely avoid gimmickry, so there’s never any coin-flipping or dice-rolling to confuse the flow of reading and making choices. The books cover an extremely broad array of subject matter, but there is some continuity between certain books in the series. Some stories follow straight on from each other, while others feature recurring characters (like the adventurous Dr. Nera Vivaldi) or themes (as in a long sequence of titles revolving around martial arts).

There were several major spin-offs from the series. The first was Choose Your Own Adventure for Younger Readers, which simply takes the format and tailors it for a younger audience. Taking this idea to a further extreme inspired the Your First Adventure series and the Choose Your Own Adventure – Walt Disney books. Going the other way and making the books longer led to Choose Your Own Adventure Super Adventure, while an experiment in more solid story arcs and recurring characters led to Choose Your Own Adventure – Passport and Choose Your Own Adventure – Space Hawks. An effort to ride the success of R. L. Stine's Goosebumps books inspired Choose Your Own Nightmare, and lucrative license agreements made possible Choose Your Own Adventure – The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles and Choose Your Own Star Wars Adventure, the last series of books to bear the Choose Your Own Adventure name until the label was revived almost a decade later for the Choose Your Own Adventure Reissues and Interactive Movies.

The books in the series have been released in a variety of forms. The most common are Bantam's editions, most of which are the standard size for small paperbacks, though the last nine titles in the series were released in a larger format more reminiscent of the Choose Your Own Adventure for Younger Readers books. In addition to the previously mentioned Lippincott hardbacks, various titles can be found in large print hardback format thanks to the efforts of Grey Castle Press and Gareth Stevens Publishing. The books are listed below in the order of their paperback publication, as this is the sequence by which they are numbered; however, in terms of chronological release, book eight came first, then book seven, then the rest.


Choose Your Own Adventure Box Set (1-6)
Choose Your Own Adventure Box Set (26-30)
Choose Your Own Adventure Box Set (63-67)
Choose Your Own Adventure Box Set (68-72)
Choose Your Own Adventure Box Set (73-77)
Choose Your Own Adventure Box Set (78-82)
Choose Your Own Adventure Box Set (88-92)
Choose Your Own Adventure Box Set 1 (1-5)
Choose Your Own Adventure Box Set 1 (115-119)
Choose Your Own Adventure Box Set 2 (120-124)
Choose Your Own Adventure Box Set 2 (6-10)
Choose Your Own Adventure Box Set 3 (11-15)
Choose Your Own Adventure Box Set 4 (16-20)
Choose Your Own Adventure Box Set 5 (21-25)
Choose Your Own Adventure Box Set 6 (41-45)
Choose Your Own Adventure Fantasy Box Set
Choose Your Own Adventure Martial Arts Box Set
Choose Your Own Adventure Space Box Set


1. The Cave of Time
2. Journey Under the Sea
3. By Balloon to the Sahara
4. Space and Beyond
5. The Mystery of Chimney Rock
6. Your Code Name is Jonah
7. The Third Planet from Altair
8. Deadwood City
9. Who Killed Harlowe Thrombey?
10. The Lost Jewels of Nabooti
11. Mystery of the Maya
12. Inside UFO 54-40
13. The Abominable Snowman
14. The Forbidden Castle
15. House of Danger
16. Survival at Sea
17. The Race Forever
18. Underground Kingdom
19. Secret of the Pyramids
20. Escape
21. Hyperspace
22. Space Patrol
23. The Lost Tribe
24. Lost on the Amazon
25. Prisoner of the Ant People
26. The Phantom Submarine
27. The Horror of High Ridge
28. Mountain Survival
29. Trouble on Planet Earth
30. The Curse of Batterslea Hall
31. Vampire Express
32. Treasure Diver
33. The Dragons' Den
34. The Mystery of the Highland Crest
35. Journey to Stonehenge
36. The Secret Treasure of Tibet
37. War with the Evil Power Master
38. Sabotage
39. Supercomputer
40. The Throne of Zeus
41. Search for the Mountain Gorillas
42. The Mystery of Echo Lodge
43. Grand Canyon Odyssey
44. The Mystery of Ura Senke
45. You Are a Shark
46. The Deadly Shadow
47. Outlaws of Sherwood Forest
48. Spy for George Washington
49. Danger at Anchor Mine
50. Return to the Cave of Time
51. The Magic of the Unicorn
52. Ghost Hunter
53. The Case of the Silk King
54. Forest of Fear
55. The Trumpet of Terror
56. The Enchanted Kingdom
57. The Antimatter Formula
58. Statue of Liberty Adventure
59. Terror Island
60. Vanished!
61. Beyond Escape!
62. Sugarcane Island
63. Mystery of the Secret Room
64. Volcano!
65. The Mardi Gras Mystery
66. Secret of the Ninja
67. Seaside Mystery
68. Secret of the Sun God
69. Rock and Roll Mystery
70. Invaders of the Planet Earth
71. Space Vampire
72. The Brilliant Dr. Wogan
73. Beyond the Great Wall
74. Longhorn Territory
75. Planet of the Dragons
76. The Mona Lisa is Missing!
77. The First Olympics
78. Return to Atlantis
79. Mystery of the Sacred Stones
80. The Perfect Planet
81. Terror in Australia
82. Hurricane!
83. Track of the Bear
84. You Are a Monster
85. Inca Gold
86. Knights of the Round Table
87. Exiled to Earth
88. Master of Kung Fu
89. South Pole Sabotage
90. Mutiny in Space
91. You Are a Superstar
92. Return of the Ninja
93. Captive!
94. Blood on the Handle
95. You Are a Genius
96. Stock Car Champion
97. Through the Black Hole
98. You Are a Millionaire
99. Revenge of the Russian Ghost
100. The Worst Day of Your Life
101. Alien, Go Home!
102. Master of Tae Kwon Do
103. Grave Robbers
104. The Cobra Connection
105. The Treasure of the Onyx Dragon
106. Hijacked!
107. Fight for Freedom
108. Master of Karate
109. Chinese Dragons
110. Invaders from Within
111. Smoke Jumper
112. Skateboard Champion
113. The Lost Ninja
114. Daredevil Park
115. The Island of Time
116. Kidnapped!
117. The Search for Aladdin's Lamp
118. Vampire Invaders
119. The Terrorist Trap
120. Ghost Train
121. Behind the Wheel
122. Magic Master
123. Silver Wings
124. Superbike
125. Outlaw Gulch
126. Master of Martial Arts
127. Showdown
128. Viking Raiders
129. Earthquake!
130. You Are Microscopic
131. Surf Monkeys
132. The Luckiest Day of Your Life
133. The Forgotten Planet
134. Secret of the Dolphins
135. Playoff Champion
136. Roller Star
137. Scene of the Crime
138. Dinosaur Island
139. Motocross Mania
140. Horror House
141. The Secret of Mystery Hill
142. The Reality Machine
143. Project UFO
144. Comet Crash
145. Everest Adventure
146. Soccer Star
147. The Antimatter Universe
148. Master of Judo
149. Search the Amazon!
150. Who Are You?
151. Gunfire at Gettysburg
152. War with the Mutant Spider Ants
153. Last Run
154. Cyberspace Warrior
155. Ninja Cyborg
156. You Are an Alien
157. U.N. Adventure
158. Sky-Jam!
159. Tattoo of Death
160. The Computer Takeover
161. Possessed!
162. Typhoon!
163. Shadow of the Swastika
164. Fright Night
165. Snowboard Racer
166. Master of Aikido
167. Moon Quest
168. Hostage!
169. Terror on the Titanic
170. Greed, Guns, and Gold
171. Death in the Dorm
172. Mountain Biker
173. The Gold Medal Secret
174. The Power Dome
175. The Underground Railroad
176. Master of Kendo
177. Killer Virus
178. River of No Return
179. Ninja Avenger
180. Stampede!
181. Fire on Ice
182. Fugitive
183. CyberHacker
184. Mayday!
185. Escape from the Haunted Warehouse

Reference/Non-Fiction Books

How to Write a Book Like a Choose Your Own Adventure Book

Related Documents


Choose Your Own Adventure / Weetabix Ad #1
from Eagle comic, June 23, 1984. Thanks to Ed Jolley for the scan.

Choose Your Own Adventure / Weetabix Ad #2
from Eagle comic, June 29, 1985. Thanks to Ed Jolley for the scan.

Choose Your Own Adventure Atari Contest
Advertisement from the promotional teacher's copy of Inside UFO 54-40.


Choose Your Own Adventure - The Abominable Snowman: Differences
This article compares the original and revised editions of The Abominable Snowman

Evolution of Sugarcane Island
This article compares the original and revised editions of Sugarcane Island.

Related Links

User Comments

I remember it well, circa 1983 our Primary School Librarian Ms. Eggers would read my class a CYOA book each Tuesday afternoon. Whenever there was a decision to be made we'd have a show of hands, and democracy ruled. I loved it and was hooked, wanted to get discover more of these books for myself.

So with the money I received for my 10th birthday I went out and bought the brand new Trouble on Planet Earth.

For most of the rest of the 80s I always scanned the newsagent stands for the new CYOA book.

28 years after the first CYOA I now have over 100.


I first encountered these books in my school library in 1981 or shortly therafter. I remember reading one book that asked me to choose from one of a couple identical doors and when I turned to whichever page suddenly I was dead. I had lost the page I came from and in frustration didn't bother with these books again until just recently. Thankfully there were other game books out there that I found and liked and now that I've come back to this series I've found some books that have very much impressed me.


I first got into the CYOA books when I was in elementary school, and they were an awesome part of my childhood. For some strange reason, though, the two libraries I visit don't have a section with all the CYOA books; instead, they're grouped in small "cells" in each library's children's books section.

--DukeNukem 2417

Making Choices Books For Kids is what got me hooked. I got that from my Aunt.

Looking for others, and failing, I wrote my Roller Coaster Adventure, never to be published. I even wrote others, which ended up trashed. To this day I regret it; so I'd remember how I started.

The first Choose Your Own Adventure I ever found was at the flea market: Dinosaur Island. Of course Making Choices Books were all I was looking for at the time.

The second I also remember: Cave of Time.

From there I've kept collecting them.

I'm hoping to write and publish my own CYOA type books soon; the first will be out this year, or 2017.


These books, which I mostly read in the early and mid 1990s, are what got me initally interested in gamebooks in general.

Now that I'm much older, I look back on them with a fond nostalgia. All the times I'd get them out from the library, mapping out every possible route and ending.

Great times.


It a rare thing for the most popular and commercially successful entity of its kind to be the ABSOLUTE WORST ever made... and yet it is, in every single sense of the phrase. Having arguably become the namesake (and trope codifier) for gamebooks around the world, the "Choose Your Own Adventure" is fittingly remembered for showing the endless possibility of interactive fiction - all while being generally very (if not extremely) poorly written and unable to live up to its vast potential. This is the epitome of greedy, incompetent writers (especially the evil, evil, EVIL man called R. A. Montgomery) who value quantity over quality. This is the pinnacle of effort-free excuses and impropable quick-fixes pathetically thrown together, with any and all of the charm, wit and vigorous passion completely absent from the amateur writing. This is the poster child for how to create the most careless construct out of overly contrived narratives, one/zero-dimensional characters and threadbare logic (when there's any logic in practice at all). Ladies and gentlemen, this is the series which is single-handedly responsible for RUINING the public's perception of gamebooks PERMANENTLY... this is the series that killed the creative prospects of millions due to its cynical, fun-free "literary" embarrassments. Despite its timing during what I refer to as the golden age for fantasy (1970s and 1980s, save in Japan where fantasy has continued to flourish), the CYOA franchise is ultimately the biggest interactive disappointment ever printed - the beginning and the end of the serious prospects for gamebooks to be taken seriously, and the series that killed off much of the genre with its mindless market-controlling craze of stupidity. ...Indeed, in my humble opinion: THESE are the books responsible for ruining the idea of gamebooks for MILLIONS of people. And the genre may never truly recover from these tragic waste of paper.


Ahhh... Choose Your Own Adventure. The series that started it all (for the most part).

This was the series that got me into interactive storybooks quite by accident back in the mid-nineties when I was about six years old. I was going to kindergarten at the time, and I checked out a book that was hardcover but which had a plain white dust jacket (presumably to help it survive better in a library). It was called Your Code Name is Jonah -- I checked it out because I liked the story of Jonah and the whale... it turned out that it was actually the sixth CYOA book (about spies and KGB agents). It was dated at the time, but I LOVED it... I even got a happy ending on my first read! Ahhh, the nostalgia.

Speaking of nostalgia, the classic series has been reissued. Go to for more information. I haven't personally seen any of the reissue titles yet, but I'm glad that a new generation will be able to enjoy these. Most of the reissued books are written by R. A. Montgomery, who is doing the reissuing. They have a new order, unfortunately, and some of the titles I'd like to see aren't in there, but it's a good start. Also, did you know that two of the authors from this series (R. A. Montgomery and Shannon Gilligan) are married? I have no idea whether they married because of Choose Your Own Adventure, or if romance came first... but it was fun visiting that website!


I first encountered the series in my school library during elementary school. I had read the series for younger readers before and wanted to know what the "big kid" series was like. The first title that I read, I believe, was Spy for George Washington. I've been hooked ever since.

One interesting thing to note is that, despite the fact that the books each have varied stories, several characters and themes reoccur throughout the series. There's Gilliam Prem (The Mystery of Chimney Rock and Who Killed Harlowe Thrombey?), Ricardo and Lisa (House of Danger and The Horror of High Ridge), and, of course, Dr. Vivaldi (Hyperspace, The Third Planet from Altair, and Underground Kingdom, just to name a few). Then there's the concept of a cave which allows whoever enters it to travel through time, which appears multiple times in the series (The Cave of Time, The First Olympics, and more), and even once in the series for younger readers (A Day with the Dinosaurs).

--Waluigi Freak 99

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