Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013
Fizz: How Soda Shook Up the World (Chicago Review Press), by Tristan Donovan
One of the world’s biggest industries involves marketing fizzy flavored water—with disastrous effects on waistlines! With Fizz, journalist Tristan Donovan delves into a history that begins with bubbling springs and the efforts of 18th-century scientists to perfect artificial carbonation for medicinal purposes. The 19th century saw the advent of fizzy fruit drinks and tonic water in the U.K., and in the U.S., elaborate soda fountains dispensing syrup-flavored carbonated drinks. Patent medicine and soft drinks were siblings in those years; Coca-Cola’s creator, John Pemberton, emerged from alternative medicine, but even mainstream science praised the benefits of cocaine, one of the active ingredients in the original Coca-Cola recipe along with kola nut extract, sugar and caramel. Like the beverage, Fizz is addictive.