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Children's LiteratureJunk food. You may or may not love it, but chances are you have eaten it at one time or another, or quite possibly are eating it now. Children of all ages (including adults) will benefit from reading this unusual examination of the part of the food pyramid that occupies the tiniest spot. Popcorn, corn chips, chocolate, candy, potato chips, and soda are all discussed in individual chapters. The evolution of the particular foods and beverages is presented, as are simple yet mind-bogglingly effective, scientific experiments pertaining to each one that can be performed at home. Some examples of these experiments include making rock candy to see the development of slow-grown sugar crystals, melting candy bars with a hair dryer to see the bloom of cocoa butter crystals, and dissecting a bag of microwave popcorn, to name a few. Another chapter in the book is solely devoted to deciphering the nutrition labels on packaged food. Colorful photographs throughout add immensely to the subject matter. The author has written numerous books for children that are both scientific and fun. She states at the conclusion of the book, "the best thing about knowing more about junk food is that you have the power to choose for yourself." Wise words for all of us. This title is part of the "Where's the Science Here?" series that also includes the titles Fireworks, Sneakers, and On Stage. Highly recommended. 2006, Millbrook Press, Ages 9 to 12.
—Cindy L. Carolan