The Redemption of Mr. Sturlubok

Mr. Leroy Sturlubok—a high-strung, loose cannon, take-no-prisoners kind of guy—has recently risen to the lofty echelons of society.  He’s become a public elementary school vice principal.  But when it seems that someone has broken through the defenses of his beloved workplace, a single decision leads to a labyrinthine world of possibilities.


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Will he solve the mystery of his predecessor’s sudden (although beneficial) demise?  Will he foil a terrorist plot from the afterlife?  Will he team up with a telepathic elderly Japanese man who looks strangely similar to Sulu from the original Star Trek?  Will he allow Tony Danza to film his new reality television show in his school?  Will he find out just who the hell is taking all the damn photocopy paper?  Will he return to his native Norway and lead a life fit for the mighty Norse god Odin, himself?  Will he start a new life among those rude and wretched Canadians?  Or will he learn the insidious secret about his ex-wife’s French fiancé, Andre Cartier?  The choice, as always, is up to you: the reader.

With more than 100 choices, 46 different endings, as well as dozens of hyperlinked footnotes, The Redemption of Mr. Sturlubok contains enough twists and surprises to keep even the most hyperactive adult entertained.  You won’t be able to help yourself from smiling—like a Kindergarten class during flu season, The Redemption of Mr. Sturlubok isinfectious.


Coming across this book was a bit of a blast from the past, I haven’t read a Choose Your Own Ending book since I was in my tweens. Not adverse to a bit of nostalgia I thought I’d give it a go.  Leroy Sturlubok is the (acting) Vice Principal at a public elementary school. He has very lofty opinions of himself, not necessarily shared by other members of staff or his acquaintances. The blurb says the book offers 100 different choices and 46 possible endings to his story. I went through the book about 5 times and found him working on a reality TV show with Tony Danza (another blast from the past), teaming up with a telepathic elderly Japanese man to foil a crime, and destroying the life of a beautiful young woman, among other plots and subplots. The choices allowed me to basically make him a real pain in the proverbial or make him slightly less so, he really isn’t much of a sympathetic character.  The navigation was easy and I have to say the best way to describe it was fun.  I stumbled across hints of other plots more than once and can see myself going back to it in future to see where different choices take me.  Booked Up

The Redemption of Mr. Sturlubok is the second choose your own adventure ebook by Kerkhoven and Pitts; I previously reviewed their other title and found it fun, but a bit on the farcical side.  This new entry is more of the same, but the farce is a little more credible this time. Mr. Sturlobok is a school principal, and his position of authority relative to the janitor of the previous book is more credible a comic hero-slash-villain.  I also work in a school myself, so I found some of the school-related details resonating with me more than they might have otherwise.  A book like this is not read for its literary merit. The authors are witty and the book is a lot of fun, but this is definitely a book-toy, and if you understand that going in, you’ll definitely enjoy it more. It’s like those people who panned the live-action Scooby Do movies because they tried to evaluate them as serious films instead of the screen candy they were intended to be. If you want a serious film, don’t watch Scooby Do. If you want a serious book, look elsewhere.  An interactive story like this must be a huge amount of work to put together. The authors were careful, and I caught no mistakes. To be careful and to make it fun to boot is no small feat. If you are in the mood for some light, comic book-play, this is the title for you.   E-Finds: Books, Music & Video

4 thoughts on “The Redemption of Mr. Sturlubok

  1. Izzy Weaver says:

    I’ve played through most, if not all, of the endings in this book. Odin has restarted things back to the beginning. Is there actually any hope for Sturlubok?

  2. rudykerkhoven says:

    Not really much hope. He’s an asshole. He usually gets what he deserves. He does find happiness a few times, in Canada, when he becomes principal. And he wins $1 000 000 dollars–that’s a pretty happy ending.

    I guess overall, it is pretty dark. I’m not sure why. Perhaps I’m a dark person. Or maybe it’s Daniel? I’ll blame him.

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