Chicago Reads

Chicago Reads

I just had my 6 year anniversary since moving to Chicago. Here are some book selections that take place in Chicago.


Dark Matter by Blake Crouch 

I just finished reading this; and wow, it’s fast paced and something you can devour in a couple sittings.

This is a sci-fi thriller about a physicist who creates a box that can pull him into parallel realities. This is also about another version the same physicist who is pulled from the reality he was in – back into the original reality and his quest to figure everything out. Sure, it sounds a little confusing, but it’s understandable and a fun read.

The main character Jason pulls you through what is going through his mind. It is part butterfly-effect and choose your own adventure, examining how your choices in life can lead you to where you are. The other part is a love story and how the love and life you build with someone – even with the ebbs and flows, can be your anchor and your home.


The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson

I picked this up when I first moved here. I actually went used bookstore hopping to find my copy. It was a self-imposed adventure to get my bearings in the city and using public transportation.

This is non-fiction taking place in the during the World’s Fair in 1893 and revolves around the architect Daniel H. Burnham and then the serial killer, Henry H Holmes.

I liked this book quite a bit, the two stories set on the parallel time line worked well for this snap-shot in time. I like true crime and grit and so I probably read the Henry H Holmes sections faster but both stories surrounding the fair and Chicago were compelling.

Another Fantastical*

Dead Beat by Jim Butcher

For those that follow this series, yes, this is the Sue book. For those that do not follow this series, this is the 7th book in the Dresden Files by Jim Butcher. The series is about a wizard/detective who lives in Chicago. In this book there is a portion that is set at The Field Museum and is a fan favorite. You can technically probably pick up any of the books 1-8 and read them as a stand alone, however, they are fast paced Urban Fantasy and if you happen to have a surplus of audio book credits, they are phenomenal on audio as they are narrated by James Marsters (Hello, Buffy fans!).

*Technically since this is part of the Dresden Files, this could fall into the Theatrical category, but TV show only lasted 1 season and it does not include the plot from this book.


The South Side by Natalie Y. Moore

This is a really informative book about the history of segregation in Chicago. A must read for Chicago residents. The narrative incorporates both a personal perspective and factual historical snap shots. It had me looking stuff up via google, and that’s always a good sign. I love books that feed and prompt curiosity.


Deadly Valentines by Jeffrey Gusfield

This is about one of Al Capone’s henchmen and his wife and the mobster life they lived here in Chicago. Again, this had me looking up addresses and seeing the google view of the notorious mob homes and hangouts. If you like mobster tales – this was informative and historical.

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