Death Valley Plants
Quick Summary:

In order to avoid eating their vegetables and going to school, the Nordtz children run away to work in Evil Willie's candy factory. Will their adventure be a sweet dream or will it turn sour?

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Back Cover Blurb:

     Two things are true about most kids: They don't like going to school and they'd rather eat candy than vegetables! So, presented with the choice of being bossed around by parents and teachers or running away to work in a candy factory, it stands to reason that many kids would choose to runaway. The children of the Nordtz family are presented with this basic dilemma when their father is transferred to a new job in a new town that happens to have the world famous Willie Wanker Candy Factory located in the middle of it!

    Evil Willie is the owner of a huge candy factory. He relies on child labor to produce his sweet confections. It is not difficult for him to attract more workers to run his factory and although he treats them well at first, he becomes more exploitative once new workers settle in. Although you might expect a candy-maker to treat children kindly, Evil Willie is more of a demanding dictator than a benevolent mentor of the children that work for him.

     Once Nordtz discovers that his children are missing, he does everything he can to find them. He calls the local police, but they aren't very helpful. He searches the streets of his new town. His wife contacts friends from their old neighborhood. How long will it take Nordtz to figure out that his children have run away to work at the candy factory? Will he be able to rescue his children from Evil Willie?

More Information:

     Evil Willie tells the story of a demented candymaker who violates every child labor law known to humankind. Not only does he coerce children into working long hours in his candy factory, but they also work in unsafe conditions and without pay. Further the youthful servants are fed disgusting greul and are not free to leave the premises at any time. Their lives are filled with endless labor and little joy despite the sweet confections that they produce. Evil Willie seems to believe that the priviledge of helping to create the world's most wonderful candy should be reward enough for the drudgery of slaving away in his candy factory.

     As an incurable egomaniac, Evil Willie is not content with being the most successful candymaker on the planet and so he expands his endeavors to include ice cream making. He is as creative at developing interesting flavors of ice cream as he is at concocting completely original types of candy. As a result he quickly comes to the attention of the world's most renowned ice cream makers, Ren and Harry. Rather than considering Evil Willie to be a threat, Ren and Harry are intrigued by Evil Willie and wish to meet with him and discuss possible collaborations. Not being a very trusting individual, Evil Willie is quite reluctant to accept their invitation and feels certain that Ren and Harry plan to trick him in some way.

     Obviously, Evil Willie is a parody of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and so it would not be complete without a character named Charlie. The Charlie in Evil Willie, however, comes from a middle class family and his siblings and parents wind up in the midst of the trouble that develops in the story along with him, Ren, Harry, and Evil Willie, as well as all the workers at the factory including a kid band that Evil Willie uses to help promote his products. In fact, several of the songs that the band performs are featured in the book including one called "Lice Cream," which was written to promote one of Evil Willie's disgustingly-named, but totally delicious flavors of ice cream. Being a parody, of course, Evil Willie is full of humor, and although the humor is sometimes somewhat eccentric, it is always good-natured and uproarishly funny without ever being disrespectful of the work that it parodies.

More info at amazon.com: Evil Willie