Summary and book reviews of Chew on This by Eric Schlosser

Chew on This

Everything You Don't Want to Know About Fast Food

by Eric Schlosser, Charles W. Wilson

Chew on This
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  • First Published:
    May 2006, 270 pages
    Paperback:
    Apr 2007, 320 pages

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About this Book

Book Summary

Bestselling author Eric Schlosser takes what he learnt and documented in his popular book, Fast Food Nation, and presents it to preteens and adolescents - the fast food industry's biggest market.

Kids love fast food. And the fast food industry definitely loves kids. It couldn’t survive without them. Did you know that the biggest toy company in the world is McDonald’s? It’s true. In fact, one out of every three toys given to a child in the United States each year is from a fast food restaurant.

Not only has fast food reached into the toy industry, it’s moving into our schools. One out of every five public schools in the United States now serves brand name fast food. But do kids know what they’re eating? Where do fast food hamburgers come from? And what makes those fries taste so good?

When Eric Schlosser’s best-selling book, Fast Food Nation, was published for adults in 2001, many called for his groundbreaking insight to be shared with young people. Now Schlosser, along with co-writer Charles Wilson, has investigated the subject further, uncovering new facts children need to know.

In Chew On This, they share with kids the fascinating and sometimes frightening truth about what lurks between those sesame seed buns, what a chicken ‘nugget’ really is, and how the fast food industry has been feeding off children for generations.

Featuring cover art by M. Wartella.

Pull open the glass door and feel the rush of cool air. Step inside. Look at the backlit color pictures of food above the counter, look at the cardboard ads for the latest Disney movie, get in line, and place your order. Hand over some money. Put the change back in your pocket. Watch teenagers in blue-and- gold uniforms busy working in the kitchen. Moments later, grab the plastic tray with your food, find an empty table, and sit down. Unwrap the burger, squirt ketchup on the fries, stick the plastic straw through the hole in the lid of your drink. Pick up the burger and dig in.

The whole experience of eating at a fast-food restaurant has become so familiar, so routine, that we take it for granted. It has become just another habit, like brushing your teeth before bed. We do it without even thinking about it—and that’s the problem.

Every day about one out of fourteen Americans eats at a McDonald’s. Every month about nine out of ten American...

Please be aware that this discussion guide may contain spoilers!
About the Book

Chew on This: Everything You Don't Want to Know About Fast Food is a carefully researched and engaging text that teachers will find useful in a variety of disciplines, including English, nutrition, health, social studies, debate, mathematics, history, and creative writing. It encourages young readers eleven and up to look critically at the world around them, offering much for self-motivated students to explore on their own while giving students who need support accessible and interesting information.

The suggestions in this teacher's guide provide starting points from which you and your students can spin off lessons in all sorts of ...
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Reviews

BookBrowse Review

BookBrowse

Chew On This doesn't simply regurgitate the "original" (Fast Food Nation) in a simpler form; instead the information has been substantially rewritten to be of interest to a younger audience, with additional information added, such as how the fast-food industry affects the lives of young people beyond simply eating the stuff.   (Reviewed by BookBrowse Review Team).

Full Review Members Only (477 words).

Media Reviews

Publishers Weekly

A stinging, often startling expose on this country's pervasive, lucrative fast-food industry, for young people.

School Library Journal

An eye-opener for general readers who regularly indulge at the Golden Arches

Booklist - John Peters

Starred Review. The authors dish up a somewhat-less-stomach-churning look at the fast-food industry's growth, practices, and effects on public health.

The Independent (UK)

Chew On This is a terrific read. A paired-down kids' menu to Fast Food Nation's whopper meal, it has lost none of its bite. Realigning the most salient points of the former book - where fast food comes from, what's in it, what it does to us - for nine- to 13-year-olds, and adding a side order of new findings, Schlosser still shocks.

Reader Reviews

popcorn lover 219

awesome
I love this book!

summerrox1899

very interesting
This book was awesome. One of the best books I have read in a while. It had so many interesting facts. I could tell the author put a lot of time and effort into writing it! It was one of those books when you started reading it, you couldn't put it ...   Read More

Roxy or not? (no its not)

Chew on a great book
This is a great book for your 10-20 Kids and adults. I read this book when I was nine and it was astonishing. I love it, Bugs in strawberry shake eww!

bookworm

i love it
I got this book from my school. I am in teen living so I got this my teacher loves it I do too. I hope I can get more cool books like this. It is great. ps:I will not eat fast food for a long time !!!!

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Beyond the Book

Eric Schlosser, an award-winning journalist, is a correspondent for the Atlantic Monthly. His 2001 book, Fast Food Nation, is assigned reading at universities across the country; he is also the author of Reefer Madness (2003). He is currently working on a book about the prison system.

"It's easy to take the fast-...

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