Killer Show: The Station Nightclub Fire, America’s Deadliest Rock Concert

John Barylick. Univ. Press of New England, $27.95 (320p) ISBN 978-1-61168-265-6
The fire started by pyrotechnics ignited during a Great White concert at the Station, a rock club in West Warwick, R.I., resulted in the deaths of 96 people and injuries to 200 more. In his first book, Barylick, an attorney who investigated the blaze and prosecuted wrongful death and personal injury cases for victims and their families, gives an in-depth accounting of the disaster, from events leading up to the first flames to the medical and legal aftermaths. The author does a great job presenting the evidence of the case—the negligence of local fire inspectors and the club owners, the Derderian brothers; the scientific findings relating to the flammable sound proofing on the club’s walls; and outlining the plaintiff’s cases against the array of civil defendants. But this book is more than just a legal document, and Barylick demonstrates great storytelling skills in his intense dramatization of what those in the fire suffered and his heartfelt descriptions of the lives of the victims and the memories of the survivors. An exploration of the perils of greed and corruption as well as a testament to the strength of the human spirit, Barylick has created a modern cautionary tale that will take your breath away. Agent: Aaron Priest and Lucy Childs Baker. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 06/11/2012
Release date: 09/01/2012
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