Whatever You Want by Rachel Timms and Laurence Hayes is a “pick-your-own-ending escapade” published in 2003 by 10 Regan Books, a division of Harper Collins. Originally published in London, Whatever You Want may be the reading experience that young adults have been waiting for since they outgrew the Choose Your Own Adventure children’s series. I picked it up, hoping that chunky volume would be the more fluid and satisfying read that I’d hoped for but never experienced with the CYOA series. At first glance, this proves to be true. Althought the volume contains a similar warning to not read straight through, it also includes the warning: if the reader finds herself finished the story with any of the endings listed below, she should seek psychatric counseling.
Already, I’m intrigued and I think my teenage students would be too. Some of them will hope to stumble upon romance, others, violent disturbance. With all of the worst possibilities listed before the story has begun, no one has yet to be turned off. I believe they will find this method less offensive than the Prologue of Romeo and Juliet which declares exactly how the characters’ fate will be played out. Some will hope to find themselves on the shortest path to finalizing the assignment. Either way, I think we’ll give it a go.