No Monkeys, No Chocolate
By Melissa Stewart
(Charlesbridge, Hardcover, 9781580892872, 32pp.)
Publication Date: August 1, 2013
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Everyone loves chocolate, right? But how many people actually know where chocolate comes from? How it’s made? Or that monkeys do their part to help this delicious sweet exist?
This delectable dessert comes from cocoa beans, which grow on cocoa trees in tropical rain forests. But those trees couldn’t survive without the help of a menagerie of rain forest critters: a pollen-sucking midge, an aphid-munching anole lizard, brain-eating coffin fly maggots—they all pitch in to help the cocoa tree survive. A secondary layer of text delves deeper into statements such as "Cocoa flowers can’t bloom without cocoa leaves . . . and maggots," explaining the interdependence of the plants and animals in the tropical rain forests. Two wise-cracking bookworms appear on every page, adding humor and further commentary, making this book accessible to readers of different ages and reading levels.
Back matter includes information about cocoa farming and rain forest preservation, as well as an author’s note.
Melissa Stewart is the award-winning author of more than 150 science books for children. She holds degrees in biology and science journalism. Recent books include UNDER THE SNOW (Peachtree, 2009) and the A Place for series (Peachtree). She lives in Acton, Massachusetts.