________________ CM . . . . Volume XXII Number 8 . . . . October 23, 2015


The Candy Conspiracy: A Tale of Sweet Victory.

Carrie Snyder. Illustrated by Claudia Dávila.
Toronto, ON: Owlkids Books, 2015.
32 pp., hardcover, $17.95.
ISBN 978-1-77147-050-6.

Preschool-grade 2 / Ages 3-7.

Review by Linda Ludke.

*** /4



One fine day, the sun rose like it always did over Candyville. It seemed like an ordinary morning ... but was it?

"Crunch" went the castle, "slurp" went the throne, "gulp" went the crown.

"More!" cried the Juicy Jelly Worm. "More, more, more!"

Here came the children with buckets of frosting. Skipping children. Giggling children. Children with a plan.

"Mine," sang the Juicy Jelly Worm. "Mine, all mine —"

"Ahem," said the clever child.

Candyville is a confection lovers' paradise ruled by a selfish Juicy Jelly Worm. The hapless children of the town are sugar slaves, charged with repairing the whipped-cream throne and frosting castle that the tyrant devours every day. Worst of all, the children are not allowed to sample a single treat. Fed up with the injustice, the children plot a candy coup. Secreted away behind a wall of sunflowers, they plant a new garden. When the Juicy Jelly Worm discovers the new crop of cherry tomatoes, sugar snap peas and sweet bell peppers, he declares them to be the "Best candy ever!" and is tricked into trading his bonbon mountain kingdom for their vegetables.

      This fable-like story is recounted in a friendly, conversational style of narration: (Can you say "Cupcake Castle" five times fast?). Alliteration, such as "nibbled a nougat" and "Lettuce leaf lollapalooza!", runs rampant throughout the text, making this a delectable read-aloud choice.

      Claudia Dávila's retro illustrations are a feast for the eyes and match the high energy text. Fields of licorice and candy corn sway in the breeze while a river of root beer flows through the town. Funny fortune cookie messages unfurl on the pages, with warnings such as, "If you keep licking the page, it will get soggy", and "This story has no moral. Let's pretend it's about sharing. Parents like stories about sharing".

      The Candy Conspiracy is a sweetly silly story that kids will eat up.


Linda Ludke is a librarian in London, ON.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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