Chew on This

Book review by
Kate Pavao, Common Sense Media
Chew on This Book Poster Image
Fast Food Nation for kids is quite meaty.
Popular with kids

Parents say

age 15+
Based on 4 reviews

Kids say

age 11+
Based on 17 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Educational Value

Kids learn about the chemicals in the food, how junk food is marketed (and why kids make great targets), how animals are raised and killed, and what it is doing to our bodies. Teens wanting to use that information to make some changes should check out the publisher's press release for some ideas.

Positive Messages

Encourages kids to think about what they eat -- and how they spend their money. Parents should know the book does have a pro-union/ anti big business stance.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Teens may be especially drawn to the profiles of kids throughout the book: The McDonald's employee working long hours at the expense of her school work, the Native American girl working to stop soft drink sales at her school, the obese teen boy worried about having gastric bypass surgery.

Violence

Some details about how animals are raised and slaughtered. A teen gets a weight-loss operation that nearly kills him.

Sex
Language
Consumerism

All sorts of products are mentioned, from McDonald's to Waffle House, but kids definitely get the idea that fast food and soda are not good for them.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this book features some upsetting details about how livestock is raised and killed. There are disturbing photographs of rotten body parts. The book also has a pro-union/anti-big business stance. Like Fast Food Nation, from which it was adapted, this book encourages readers to think about what they eat -- and how they spend their money.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byDietMtnDew June 19, 2013

Poisoning Minds

This book is a terrible influence on children. This book only tells one half of the story. "Chew On This" only talks about extreme cases that occur so... Continue reading
Adult Written bymoviemadness April 9, 2008

EVERYONE should read this book!!!

In the age of rising obesity rates and related health issues it is more important than ever that we recognize what is going on behind our Bic Macs!
Teen, 13 years old Written bysillysasha123 April 24, 2014

Exellent book!!

Overall this was a great book! it is truly an eye opener. I did like some fast food occasionaly but after reading this, i have never eaten a chicken nugget agai... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written bynorthpark April 9, 2008

What's the story?

This book teaches kids the history of fast food, and shows them the impact it has had on society. Kids learn about the chemicals in the food, how junk food is marketed (and why kids make great targets), how animals are raised and killed, and what it is doing to our bodies.

Is it any good?

You have to admit, the subject matter is as fascinating as it is repulsive; you don't want to look, and yet you can't turn away. Fast Food Nation fans will certainly recognize much of the material here; this book features many of the same stories and facts about junk food.

Teens may be especially drawn to the profiles of kids throughout the book: The McDonald's employee working long hours at the expense of her school work, the Native American girl working to stop soft drink sales at her school, the obese teen boy worried about having gastric bypass surgery. The photographs seem randomly placed throughout the book, and the narrative can wander a bit. Even so, teens probably will be inspired to rethink their habits.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about their eating habits. How do your kids think they are doing versus most American teens and tweens?

  • The authors encourage kids to vote with their dollars and "stop buying" junk food from fast-food companies. Ask your kids: Do they think that individual behavior can really make an impact on society? What else could you do to make a difference? Check out the publisher's press release for some ideas.

Book details

For kids who love books about people, history and the real world

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