The Candy Shop Wars by Brandon Mull

The Fablehaven Series had already made me love Brandon Mull but for some reason I was hesitant to pick up The Candy Shop Wars. Something about the description at the back of the book didn’t appeal to me. But then, while I was walking around looking for some new books, I thought, well if he could create something even half as good, it will probably be a good book and I really like his writing. So finally, I picked up the book and brought it home. I’m glad I did, it was more than worth buying with the only positive going for it that I’ve liked the author’s other work.

The Candy Shop Wars follows new kid in town Nate and his three new friends Summer, Trevor, and Pigeon when they stop in at the new candy shop in town and have their worlds changed. Mrs. White, the candy shop owner, offers them special candy, if they will do tasks for her to help her gather things she needs for her candy. They agree, the tasks seem pretty harmless anyway and the candy! If you could have candy that let you bounce around like you’re on the moon or allow yourself to control people through the power of suggestion, could you turn it down? And even better, what if there was candy that could help you get back at the school bullies and keep them from bothering you? But is Mrs. White the honest old woman she appears to be or does she have a bigger, more sinister plan in mind?

Mull does a good job keeping both the excitement of discovery and the air of mystery alive in this work (which will soon be coming out with a sequel). The danger is ever present and always growing and you can’t help but be sucked into the book as you wish you could shout advice and encouragement to these young heroes as they are faced with difficult decisions. There’s never a full moment in this series and I can’t wait to see where book two takes us (as well as the fates of certain characters from book one).

One particular thing I love about this book is that for once it explains why children would be the ones involved in these dangerous events and why adults would involve them. There are times when you can’t help but wonder “would an adult really have a kid do that?” in some series (in Mull’s Fablehaven he constantly has the grandparents trying to keep the kids out of it to no avail), but here we get a clear cut, quick answer, taking away all that speculation.

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