On the Corner of Chocolate Avenue: How Milton Hershey Brought Milk Chocolate to America

HarperCollins/Clarion. Dec. 2022. 40p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9780358578758.
K-Gr 4–In the U.S., milk chocolate and Hershey are nearly synonymous, but how many children know the whole story? Cohen gives readers a detailed picture of Hershey and his legacy. The book starts with his impoverished childhood and moves through his training as a candy maker as well as some of his failed businesses before he finally found success making caramels and then chocolate. There are some interesting text boxes of information about some of his experiments, e.g., on the fat content of the milk from different breeds of cows. Cohen also covers Hershey’s philanthropic efforts for orphaned boys and his support of education and training for young people. The artwork is warm and realistic, adding depth and humanity to the text. The back matter includes photos of Hershey, a time line, bibliography, and resources to find out more about him, and about chocolate-making. Readers will admire Hershey for his persistence and perseverance as well as his philanthropy. However, there are already a number of modern biographies on him for this age group, and this one doesn’t add any new information or insights to a fairly well-documented life.
VERDICT In a crowded field of picture book biographies, this one doesn’t really cover any new ground.

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