Sunday, April 30, 2017

Spring Reading 2017 Fairy Floss: The Sweet Story of Cotton Candy


Who doesn't love the sweet smell of cotton candy wafting through the air at a fair or carnival? And the  taste of it as it melts on your tongue is heavenly. But many people don't know that it was once a treat made in thicker candy threads. The candy maker had to spin a bowl over an open flame to create the sugary filaments. It was hot and laborious work. But at the 1904 World's Fair in St. Louis, an electric candy machine was introduced that spun the sugar so finely it was like a soft candy cloud - cotton candy!

Young readers will enjoy seeing the introduction of the candy machine from the viewpoint of Lillie, a young girl visiting the exhibits. Illustrations capture the period clothing and setting, as well as the curious crowds gathered to see the wonders of  the World's Fair, especially the amazing inventions displayed in the Palace of Electricity. For us - toasters, dishwashers, and coffeemakers are everyday items, but to the tourists in St. Louis, they were practically miracles.  The author's note mentions some of the many names for the candy around the world, as well as facts like how many boxes of the candy were sold at that 1904 fair. There is even a list of suggestions for further reading, if this story doesn't satisfy your sweet tooth.

I received an advance copy from the publisher for review purposes.

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