How Does Chocolate Taste on Everest?

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The bright, engaging middle grade nonfiction book How Does Chocolate Taste on Everest? by Leisa Stewart-Sharpe (Charlesbridge, September 2023) highlights the most extreme places around the world. With a vacation guide book feel, How Does Chocolate Taste? emphasizes what you see, smell, taste, hear, and touch when you visit the highest, best, deepest, hottest, and coldest world places, as well as how to prepare for your adventure when you’re there.

The author plays on the vacation guide book theme throughout, giving the book a fun feel. It starts with a packing list and includes cute notes home throughout. (“Dear Mom and Dad, I need a good bath!”) Each location has two spreads focused on it, including an introductory page about the place and then a second page asking the questions about the senses: “Can you feel that?”, “Can you see that?”, etc. The adventures include travels to Ethiopia (the world’s hottest place), Mount Everest (as the title suggests), Greenland, Antarctica, the Amazon, and many more. Some included places are most likely unfamiliar, such as “The World’s Most Electric Place” in Venezuela.

The colorful illustrations by Aaron Cushley add delight. The entire book becomes an adventure because of how these illustrations tie right into the narrative. I particularly like that each location has at least one beautiful spread that, for me at least, adds to the sense of amazement and the beauty of these extreme places. I also like that the author shows a group of kids having these adventures in each location. Not many kids will climb Mount Everest, but it will be fun for them to imagine themselves having these adventures or planning for future adventures.

The eager young reader could refer to How Does Chocolate Taste? for research purposes in learning about extreme places on earth (a glossary at the end will help). Or, more likely, someone will pick up the colorful book to browse it or to read it cover to cover as I did, eager to see what other extreme places on earth have been explored or are ready for someone to explore.

I voluntarily read and reviewed an advance review copy of this book provided by the publisher via NetGalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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Reviewed on September 26, 2023

About the author 

Rebecca Reid

Rebecca Reid is a homeschooling, stay-at-home mother seeking to make the journey of life-long learning fun by reading lots of good books. Rebecca Reads provides reviews of children's literature she has enjoyed with her children; nonfiction that enhances understanding of educational philosophies, history and more; and classical literature that Rebecca enjoys reading.

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