In Boston, 1919, a huge tank filled with two million gallons of molasses burst apart and flooded Boston’s North End. The wave of molasses was as tall as 15 feet and not only covered buildings but pushed many houses and buildings off their foundations. Kops captures the fascinating stories of several survivors, as well as the aftermath clean up and the trial that found the United States Industrial Alcohol company (USIA) at fault for not properly testing their tank and not keeping it in good condition. Twenty-one people were killed in this extraordinary disaster, which took years to clean up. The North End was reported to still smell like molasses on hot days as recently as the 1990′s. This is the kind of nonfiction book that is so bizarre you have to keep reading through to the end, even if it’s past your bedtime.
reviewed by Jennifer