Jon Stroud - The Sucker's Guide A Journey into the Soft Centre of the Sweet Shop. PDF

PDF The delightful cover, as well as the interesting title, first attracted me to this book and I was not disappointed.

What a brilliant, and informative, read that is full of nostalgia for long-gone (for me anyway) schooldays and visits to the tuck shop - ours was run by a lady called Jennie and it was always a delight to go in and browse before buying, more often than not, one of the delicacies discussed in this very readable and amusing book.

Interesting to note that Liquorice Allsorts came about by accident and that Wine Gums nearly didn't make it if Mr Maynard senior had had his way, but Maynard junior prevailed and 102 years on they are still with us. Of course, as we all know (!), Burgundy, Champagne, Claret, Port and Sherry are the only words that appear on proper Wine Gums.

As well as descriptions and illustrations of the sweets, and I never knew that those round aniseed jellies (liquorice free) in Liquorice Allsorts are called spogs, there is interesting historical detail such as the trade name Haribo is derived from HAns RIegal of BOnn - I didn't know that either!!

The author does make one comment on which I frowned (only in jest) and that was in relation to Bonbons when he wrote on the different varities, 'or even Vimto, with its own curious combination of grape, raspberry and blackcurrant'. Curious? There's nothing curious about Vimto and the combination is what makes the fabulous taste! You can see that I am a regular Vimto drinker and always have been - hot in the winter and cold in the summer.

This book is a reminder of childhood, also a reminder of where some early teeth disappeared to and is a gastronomic delight for those of us who still indulge in a little sweeet eating - even if not nowadays eating such as Liquorice Pipes, Black Jacks or Flying Saucers.

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