How Sweet It Is

Sweet!: The Delicious Story of Candy
By Ann Love and Jane Drake; Illustrated by Claudia Davila
Tundra Books; $14.99, 64 pp. softcover publication April 14th, 2009 (hardcover © 2007)

Some might say that a book about candy, with kids as the target market, could be a little off-base in this era of childhood obesity and early onset diabetes. But a childhood without candy is a sad one indeed, and authors Ann Love and Jane Drake spend most of their book looking at the history of candy over the course of 8000 years rather than encouraging their readers to run out and stuff their faces.

Geared to a readership between the ages of 9 and 12, Sweet could also skew younger if it was read with an adult to explain the more detailed passages, but would also make decent reading for teens and even adults. I have a personal library full of books on the history of candy and chocolate, and the authors managed to include more than a few facts and stories of which I was unaware. Fun cartoon-like illustrations by Claudia Davila definitely make it clear that this is a children’s book, but cartoon interpretations of such candy icons as Milton Hershey will amuse adults as well.

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