Local Interest

Awesome titles from local authors!

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Severance: A Novel Cover Image
By Ling Ma
ISBN: 9781250214997
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Published: Picador - May 7th, 2019

"Severance is the best work of fiction I've read yet about the millennial condition--the alienation and cruelty that comes with being a functional person under advanced global capitalism, and the compromised pleasures and irreducibly personal meaning to be found in claiming some stability in a terrible world. I love how, in this novel, doom is inevitable, and yet it comes so slowly you might not even notice it. Ling Ma has written one of my favorite novels of the year." --Jia Tolentino, New Yorker staff writer

We say: Read it.  You won't regret it.  

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Lost Restaurants of Chicago Cover Image
By Greg Borzo, Hot Doug's Doug Sohn (Foreword by)
ISBN: 9781625859334
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Published: History Press - December 3rd, 2018

Many of Chicago's greatest or most unusual restaurants are "no longer taking reservations," but they're definitely not forgotten. From steakhouses to delis, these dining destinations attracted movie stars, fed the hungry, launched nationwide trends and created a smorgasbord of culinary choices. Stretching across almost two centuries of memorable service and adventurous menus, this book revisits the institutions entrusted with the city's special occasions. Noted author Greg Borzo dishes out course after course of fondly remembered fare, from Maxim's to Charlie Trotter's and Trader Vic's to the Blackhawk.

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What Should Be Wild: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062684141
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Published: Harper Perennial - May 7th, 2019

"Delightful and darkly magical. Julia Fine has written a beautiful modern myth, a coming-of-age story for a girl with a worrisome power over life and death. I loved it." --Audrey Niffenegger, author of The Time Traveler's Wife and Her Fearful Symmetry

Finalist for the Bram Stoker Superior Achievement in a First Novel Award Shortlisted for the Chicago Review of Books Best Novel Prize Bustle Unmissable Debut of the Year Popsugar Best Book of the Year Washington Post Best Fantasy Book of May Refinery 29 Best May Book Chicago Review of Books Best May Book Verge Gripping Fantasy Novel of May

In this darkly funny, striking debut, a highly unusual young woman must venture into the woods at the edge of her home to remove a curse that has plagued the women in her family for millennia--an utterly original novel with all the mesmerizing power of The Tiger's WifeThe Snow Child, and Swamplandia!

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Algren: A Life Cover Image
ISBN: 9781613735329
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Published: Chicago Review Press - October 1st, 2016

Algren is a welcome addition to the literature on Nelson Algren's life and work. In fact the strength of Algren is the way that Wisniewski integrates Algren's working life with his personal life. This thankfully is not yet another biography of a writer that ignores the writing." --Stuart Dybek, author of The Coast of Chicago

Wisniewski interviewed dozens of Algren's closest friends and inner circle, including photographer Art Shay and author and historian Studs Terkel, and tracked down much of his unpublished writing and correspondence. She unearths new details about the writer's life, work, personality, and habits and reveals a funny, sensitive, and romantic but sometimes exasperating, insecure, and self-destructive artist. biography The first new biography of Algren in over 25 years, this fresh look at the man whose unique style and compassionate message enchanted readers and fellow writers and whose boyish charm seduced many women is indispensable to anyone interested in 20-century American literature and history.

Chicago Writers Association Nonfiction Book of the Year (2017)
Society of Midland Authors Literary Award in Biography (2017)

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Census: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062676146
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Published: Ecco - May 7th, 2019

"[Ball's] most personal and best to date... [A] point -- about the beautiful varieties of perception, of experience -- made without sentimentality, burns at the core of the book, and of much of Ball's work, which rails against the tedium of consensus, the cruelty of conformity."--New York Times

Wrenching and beautiful, Census is a novel about free will, grief, the power of memory, and the ferocity of parental love. It is also an indictment of the cruelties of our society by a major writer.

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Chicago by the Book: 101 Publications That Shaped the City and Its Image Cover Image
By Caxton Club, Neil Harris (Introduction by)
ISBN: 9780226468501
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Published: University of Chicago Press - November 20th, 2018

Chicago by the Book profiles 101 landmark publications about Chicago from the past 170 years that have helped define the city and its image. Each title--carefully selected by the Caxton Club, a venerable Chicago bibliophilic organization--is the focus of an illustrated essay by a leading scholar, writer, or bibliophile. 

Arranged chronologically to show the history of both the city and its books, the essays can be read in order from Mrs. John H. Kinzie's 1844 Narrative of the Massacre of Chicago to Sara Paretsky's 2015 crime novel Brush Back. Or one can dip in and out, savoring reflections on the arts, sports, crime, race relations, urban planning, politics, and even Mrs. O'Leary's legendary cow. The selections do not shy from the underside of the city, recognizing that its grit and graft have as much a place in the written imagination as soaring odes and boosterism. As Neil Harris observes in his introduction, "Even when Chicagoans celebrate their hearth and home, they do so while acknowledging deep-seated flaws." At the same time, this collection heartily reminds us all of what makes Chicago, as Norman Mailer called it, the "great American city."