The Chocolate Touch

by Patrick Skene Catling

Start Free Trial

What is the setting of The Chocolate Touch?

Quick answer:

The setting of The Chocolate Touch is a middle-class neighborhood of a suburban community that may be in England or the United States. Specific places include John’s home and school, neighborhood streets, his friend Susan’s home, and a doctor’s office. Significant action occurs in a candy store that seems to be magical, as it later disappears. The time period seems to be contemporary with the novel’s publication in 1952.

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

The exact setting of The Chocolate Touch is never identified in terms of a country, state or province, or city. Because the author was British, it may be set in England, but a US setting is also likely. The action takes place in John’s home and other locations that are fairly close to it. The author’s descriptions suggest that John lives in a middle-class neighborhood in a suburban community. This also seems to be a secure, low-crime area, given that John and other children are allowed to walk around on their own without adult supervision. The time period is probably the late 1940s or early 1950s, as the novel was originally published in 1952.

As the book opens, the reader learns that John lives “in a comfortable house” with both his parents and his sister. This home seems to be a detached house with a large yard. It is described as having a “green lawn” and numerous trees that are large enough to climb. The house has a separate kitchen door, and John has his own room on the second floor.

The narrator’s statement that John’s father sometimes has to “hurry to town” suggests that he works in that town and the home is in a suburb. The neighborhood seems to be safe and pleasant, as John often walks by himself to other children’s homes.

Two other settings are the school John attends and his friend Susan’s house, where he is a guest at her birthday party. Also significant is the doctor’s office to which his parents take him for an examination after he develops chocolate-touch condition.

The candy store that figures significantly in the plot is apparently magical. Its appearance is connected with John’s finding a coin on the sidewalk near his house. This “small corner store” is described as a “brick building with two show windows.” Later, the store disappears and only a vacant lot is visible in this location.

See eNotes Ad-Free

Start your 48-hour free trial to get access to more than 30,000 additional guides and more than 350,000 Homework Help questions answered by our experts.

Get 48 Hours Free Access
Approved by eNotes Editorial