Steve Almond doesn't just love candy, he unabashedly worships every aspect of confectionary culture, from the creation of an exceptional malt ball through the tragic demise of a badly conceived candy bar, from the emotion-laden memories stirred by a bite of chocolate to his near-drooling anticipation of spotting a new package on the candy shelves. Almond, who claims to have between three and seven pounds of candy in his house at all times, set out to uncover the inexplicable disappearance of the Bit-O-Choc, the Caravelle bar, and other delights. As he documents his visits to candy factories across America, he reveals the true nature of the industry, with hilarious asides examining the role candy plays in our lives, and often confessing his own near-obsessive cravings. Almond's wry writing style is undeniably addictive and impossible to put down until every last bit has been devoured; listeners should be warned to keep a ready supply of sweets on hand.
Part memoir, part exploration of the candy industry, Steve Almond's Candyfreak is a treat for both confection connoisseurs and occasional nougat nibblers.
Like Charlie on his first visit to the Chocolate Factory, Almond is a wide-eyed narrator who truly appreciates the magic of candy. He wants to know how it's made and how he can get his hands on it. And like the Willy Wonka in us all, he dreams up extraordinary, imaginary candy concoctions that'll make your mouth water.
Oliver Wyman portrays Almond's freakdom to pitch-perfection - comic when recounting an embarrassing Halloween episode, nostalgic when reminiscing on his favorite candies of the past. The combination is heartfelt, quirky, and absolutely delicious.
Alex Award Winner, 2005
"Strangely endearing." (Publishers Weekly)
"I devoured Candyfreak. Steve Almond writes about chocolate with the passion of a man in love and the wonder of a wide-eyed kid in a candy store." (Tom Perotta, author of Election)
"An entertaining book full of repeatable tidbits about the candy industry." (The New York Times Book Review)
"Wry, self-deprecating, and darkly funny." (The Village Voice)
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