Candyfreak: A Journey Through the Chocolate Underbelly of America (Google eBook)

Front Cover
Algonquin Books, 2004 - Technology & Engineering - 266 pages
408 Reviews
Perhaps you remember the whipped splendor of the Choco-Lite, or the luscious Caravelle bar, or maybe the sublime and perfectly balanced Hershey's Cookies 'n Mint. The Marathon, an inimitable rope of caramel covered in chocolate. Oompahs. Bit-O-Choc. The Kit Kat Dark.

Steve Almond certainly does. In fact, he was so obsessed by the inexplicable disappearance of these bars—where'd they go?—that he embarked on a nationwide journey to uncover the truth about the candy business. There, he found an industry ruled by huge conglomerates, where the little guys, the last remaining link to the glorious boom years of the candy bar in America, struggle to survive.

Visiting the candy factories that produce the Twin Bing, the Idaho Spud, the Goo Goo Cluster, the Valomilk, and a dozen other quirky bars, Almond finds that the world of candy is no longer a sweet haven. Today's precious few regional candy makers mount daily battles against corporate greed, paranoia, and that good old American compulsion: crushing the little guy.

Part candy porn, part candy polemic, part social history, part confession, Candyfreak explores the role candy plays in our lives as both source of pleasure and escape from pain. By turns ecstatic, comic, and bittersweet, Candyfreak is the story of how Steve Almond grew up on candy—and how, for better and worse, candy has grown up, too.
  

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5 stars
90
4 stars
177
3 stars
105
2 stars
31
1 star
5

I loved, loved, loved the writing style. - Goodreads
My blood sugar was spiking after the intro. - Goodreads
Humorous and educational. - Goodreads
Great read, talented writer, good for a few laughs! - Goodreads
There were some fascinating facts and insights. - Goodreads
A huge inspiration for my own candy writing. - Goodreads

Review: Candyfreak: A Journey through the Chocolate Underbelly of America

User Review  - Jim - Goodreads

I read this years back but saw it recently in the bargain bin of a local bookstore and had a wonderful book flashback. You know that thing that happens when you see a beloved book after many years ... Read full review

Review: Candyfreak: A Journey through the Chocolate Underbelly of America

User Review  - Jeanna - Goodreads

I read this one forever ago, so I don't remember it very well right now. The three things I remember most: 1. It was hilarious. 2. I couldn't recommend it to anyone because of some super inappropriate ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

Some Things You Should Know about the Author
1
The Author Will Now Rationalize
9
Chocolate Enabler
17
In Which an Unhealthy Pattern of Dependence Is Established
18
An IllAdvised Discussion of Freak Economics
24
Night of the Living Freak
30
Mistakes Were Made
33
Caravelle An Elegy
38
Chocolate Haiku
140
Freak Retentive
149
In the Belly of the Freak
152
The Unstoppable Freak Energy of Mr Marty Palmer
155
Southbound with the Hammers Down
173
The Candy Bar on Your Chin
178
The Marshmallow Parallax
188
A Depressing but Necessary Digression
199

I Manny
48
Feeding the Beast
54
A TopSecret Chocolate Situation
61
The Politics of the Rack
66
The Last Man in America with Black Jack Gum
72
The Capo Di Tutti Freak
81
The Love Song of Ray Luthar Broekel
86
Welcome to the Boom
92
There Are Men upon This Earth Who Tread Like Gods
100
Feuilletine Revealed
107
Freak Fetish
115
The Official Dark Horse Freak of Philadelphia
118
Wee Willie and the PopaLicks Rage
125
SouthernFried Freak
133
Gateway to Boise
201
Ladies and Gentlemen the Idaho Spud
205
Huckleberry Hounded
216
American Lunch
224
How Will the Spud Survive?
228
The Past Is Just Ahead
234
BananaZaba
241
A Second Depressing but Necessary Digression
248
A Little Hidden Bomb in My Idaho Spud
250
A Few Final Relevant Facts
254
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
263
FREAK APPENDIX
265
Copyright

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About the author (2004)

Steve Almond teaches creative writing at Boston College.

Bibliographic information