Parents' Guide to

Love Sugar Magic: A Dash of Trouble, Book 1

By Jan Carr, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 8+

Magically sweet story set in Mexican American family bakery.

Book Anna Meriano Fantasy 2018
Love Sugar Magic: A Dash of Trouble, Book 1 Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 8+

Based on 1 parent review

age 8+

Magical trouble

At the beginning of the book the main character didn’t set the best example because she did go behind her family’s back, but overall the the book is fun because it is full of magic.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: (1):
Kids say: Not yet rated

Mix one spunky Mexican American girl with some sugarcoated magic spells baked up in her family's panadería, and you've got a recipe for a sweet middle grade fantasy. The magic in Love Sugar Magic: A Dash of Trouble is harmless. As oldest sister Isabel explains, "Our special family power comes from the magic of sweetness; sweetness from love and sweetness from sugar."

But the real magic in the story is the Mexican American protagonist and family, with traditions that may be distinct, but relationships that are touchingly familiar. Author Anna Meriano gives us a plucky protagonist who's not afraid to bend the rules to teach herself new skills. When she encounters problems, she doesn't run to adults, but puts her mind to solving them herself. Though her dad is present and loving, it's the females in the family who are brujas, passing knowledge and power down from one generation to the next. The story assigns each sister a defining trait (oldest is responsible, next is rebellious, etc.), and the crowded house with one bathroom for five girls feels realistically busy and bustling and warm.

Book Details

Did we miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate