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Summary: Cassie is the teen proprietor of a most unusual candy store. If it is cotton candy spider webs or licorice bats you crave, hers is the store for you. Join Cassie as she gives you a tour of all her goodies. This is a rhyming picture book with a mature theme.
Type of Reading: family reading, anytime reading, read aloud book
Recommended Age: read together: 7 to 10; read yourself: 9 to 12
Young Reader Reaction: Our preschooler saw this on the counter and was immediately attracted to it. S/he asked for several successive readings of this story; and then came back after supper and wanted a few more readings.
Adult Reader Reaction: Although billed for Tweeners, this is a basic rhyming book. Since we are always on the lookout for stories that go beyond the norm, this looked interesting. The candy itself wasn't nearly as distasteful as some of the vocabulary. We changed a number of words, as we don't think 4-year-olds need to start repeating "gross-out" words.
Pros: The story is different than most, and a change from the sugar-and-spice books that are more common. It may have value for struggling or remedial readers who don't want "baby" books.
Cons: Although the illustrations are brightly colored, they do have a gothic look to them to create effect. You will want to preview.
Borrow or Buy: Skip it. If you're trying to get your 9 to 12 year-old interested in reading, regressing to a rhyming book won't help you.