The Candy Caper (Trouble at Table 5 book 1) by Tom Watson

Published by HarperCollins

Image result for trouble at table 5 candy

Summary:  Narrator Molly is a third grader who sometimes “gets things stuck in her head”.  When she sees a jar of Skittles on the principal’s desk, she can’t rest until she knows how many are in the jar.  Fortunately, her friends Simon and Rosie understand her, and they offer to figure out a way to count the candies.  After a few false starts, the three of them hatch a plan to get Molly sent to the principal’s office, then to distract the principal while Molly replaces the original jar with one she’s brought from home.  The plan works, Molly gets her answer, and even her understanding parents don’t punish her for getting sent to the principal’s office. Includes three activities that connect to the story. 96 pages; grades 1-3.

Pros:  A fun school story for emergent readers, showing the progress made in reading the book at the end of each chapter.  Kids with anxiety or OCD may make some connections to Molly, who is portrayed sympathetically and surrounded by supportive friends and family (although I wish the principal had caught her so they could have had a conversation about Molly asking how many Skittles were in the jar instead of having to sneak them).

Cons:  This is part of a new HarperChapters imprint which seems to be Harper’s answer to the Scholastic Branches series.  Their website even compare one of the new series (13th Street) to Eerie Elementary and Notebook of Doom. Sure, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, but I think Harper would be better served by coming up with something a bit more original.

If you would like to buy this book from the Odyssey Bookshop, click here.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s