Kirkus Reviews 1997

From Kirkus Reviews

In the late 19th century, American schooners brought ice, refined sugar, and other goods to Santo Domingo to exchange 
for cocoa and coffee beans, and out of that Appelbaum spins a fine story of two children who love chocolate ices. In the 
tropical summer of the island, a girl helps her parents collect, harvest, and prepare cocoa beans, which require a lot of 
coaxing before the transcendent chocolate flavor is released. She goes with her father when the cocoa is traded to a 
Yankee mariner; he shares a bag scented with balsam needles, as well as the picture of his niece. The niece, in Maine’s 
hard winter, describes how ice is prepared, cut, and made to keep through the warmer months, and then carried to and 
traded in Santo Domingo. The strong, flat colors of cut paper and gouache make marvelous images of both endless 
summer and the seemingly endless winter, and the shared fondness for cocoa ice (as well as a seashell and the balsam 
bag) enable the girls to reach across their different worlds to connect. A tasty treat. (Picture book. 5-10) —

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