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Twenty years ago, when Mark Pendergrast published the first edition of his voluminous unauthorized history of the world’s most famous product, Coca-Cola had recovered from the misguided launch of New Coke and protests over its investments in South Africa. Today the third edition of Pendergrast’s opus includes four new chapters, which chronicle the company’s recovery after a decade of leadership turnover as well as its foray into a new “cola war” of debates over soda’s role in the obesity epidemic. Pendergrast, an Atlanta native and graduate of the Westminster Schools, also includes new archival discoveries, such as additional evidence that Coca-Cola long ago contained cocaine.

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