ForeWord Reviews

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Chocolate Chocolate Moons

Clarion Review (4 Stars)

Molly Summers is a gal who loves her chocolate. While working as a security guard at a factory where a particular candy is poisoned, the lead investigator points out that Molly had easy access to commit the crime. “Easy access but no motive,” she tells him. “I consider Godiva and Hershey saints and chocolate to be the food of the gods.”

Welcome to the twenty-fourth century, when overweight earthlings can travel to the moon and live in an atmosphere where they weigh nearly five times less than their actual weight. At first, it is heaven for the Neil Armstrong University-bound Molly and her heavyset boyfriend, Drew, but they soon break up when another girl comes between them.

Life goes on for Molly, and when readers meet up with her again she is married, the mother of twin fifteen-year-old daughters, and working security for the Culinary Institute of Mars, where the big question of the novel arises: why would someone want to sabotage the popular candy Chocolate Moons? With the help of her Martian best friend, Jersey, and Jersey’s husband—the half-human, half-machine, Trenton—Molly tries to solve the mystery.

Kingon is a teacher, artist, and writer who has had several short stories published, as well as articles in the New York Times. This rollicking, whimsical, tongue-in-cheek story is her debut novel.

Chocolate Chocolate Moons is reminiscent of the futuristic movies Total Recall and The Fifth Element—with an added dollop of Betty Crocker. Food is ever present in this alternate universe. In fact, many of Molly’s thoughts and feelings are associated with food: “I feel as light as a whipped egg white in a floating island dessert.”

Molly tells the story in first person and in present tense. However, the perspective becomes unclear at points because she seems to be an omnipotent narrator as well. Readers may overlook this, though, and focus instead on the multitude of pop-culture tie-ins the author purposely mangles. For instance, two of the newswomen mentioned are Barbara Bottled Waters and Katy Catty.

The dialogue between the characters is fresh and entertaining, as in this exchange between Molly and Jersey. Molly decides to order brownies to go, explaining, “Maybe I’ll take the order out and save them for later.” Jersey replies, “Ha, with you and chocolate, there is no ‘later!’”

The book’s cover is engaging and features a partial face shot of, presumably, the main character, mouth tantalizingly open, ready to plop in a Chocolate Moon candy. A darkened outer space serves as the background, complete with a crescent moon, several stars, and Saturn and its rings.

Those who like unusual stories served with a dose of humor will enjoy Molly’s out-of-this-world adventure.

Robin Farrell Edmunds