Reading about Illinois

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Reading about Illinois

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Muokkaaja: joulukuu 9, 2006, 10:25am

Here are some suggestions for Illinois:

The Jungle by Upton Sinclair

The Pit by Frank Norris

Herzog by Saul Bellows

Books by Sara Paretsky

Muokkaaja: joulukuu 9, 2006, 10:44am

Being from southern Illinois myself (across from St. Louis), I would love to see some books on the list that represent all of the state and not just Chicago. Too often the only thing associated with Illinois is Chicago, and that leaves out over 9 million other residents.

P.S. I love the idea of this group!

joulukuu 9, 2006, 11:15am

I mentioned this one in the Chicago thread, but it is perhaps even more appropriate here. Spoon River Anthology is a true American masterpiece. It "takes place" in a small town in Illinois.

joulukuu 9, 2006, 12:32pm

Chicago: Time Traveler's Wife is set in Chicago, and while it's not the focus of the story, it is relied upon and is also a pretty accurate portrayal.

Crossing California - I read earlier this year... it's set in Chicago in the late '70s (California is a street name in this case).

Non-Chicago: Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury.

I'm a Chicagoan at heart; I'm surprised I can't think of more books set there!

joulukuu 9, 2006, 6:25pm

Road to Perdition, which I haven't read, but might appeal to true crime readers.


In small-town Illinois, a loyal hitman is betrayed by his boss and he goes on a spree of revenge. The only thing is that he has his young son along (the rest of his family was murdered). Some historical figures such as Al Capone and Eliot Ness, already quite mythologized, are taken for another trip down fiction lane.

joulukuu 10, 2006, 1:53pm

joulukuu 10, 2006, 2:09pm

One of my favorites is Tina L. Jens' The Blues Ain't Nothin', stories set in a haunted blues bar in Chicago's Lincoln Park neighborhood.

joulukuu 11, 2006, 2:11pm

Another NON-CHICAGO Illinois read is Catch by Will Leitch which is a young adult novel set in Mattoon, Illinois.

joulukuu 11, 2006, 2:57pm

joulukuu 11, 2006, 8:25pm

Viesti poistettu

11Trainspotr Ensimmäinen viesti
joulukuu 14, 2006, 11:54am

Richard Powers has several books which take place in Illinois, mostly outside of Chicago. Prisoner's Dilemma is set in DeKalb, Galatea 2.0 and Gain take place in Champaign.
And David Foster Wallace has a couple of essays in A supposedly fun thing I'll never do again which will get your head nodding if you've ever been to the State Fair or tried to play tennis on a windy day in Central Illinois.

Muokkaaja: tammikuu 10, 2007, 8:25am

So Long, See You Tomorrow by William Maxwell is about a murder on an lllinois farm in the 1920's.

13Illiniguy71 Ensimmäinen viesti
tammikuu 15, 2007, 8:15pm

If I remember correctly, Gain is in the Peoria or East Peoria area rather than in Champaign.

tammikuu 25, 2007, 1:51am

Another non-Chicagoland entry would be the "Dearest Dorothy" series by Charlene Baumbich set in fictious Partonville, IL located "... in the northern part of southern Illinois." In a later book, it's fixed at "an hour or so east of St. Louis" in one description. The books are classified as "inspirational", but the religion isn't too heavy-handed.

tammikuu 25, 2007, 10:46am


Because of this thread I just ordered:
Spoon River Anthology (Signet Classics (Paperback))
The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair That Changed America
Author: Erik Larson

I REALLY enjoyed The Time Traveler's Wife and have to add a few that are YA selections but worthy of your time in my opinion!

all written by Richard Peck
Long Way from Chicago
and its sequel A Year Down Yonder
Fair Weather


helmikuu 22, 2007, 10:23pm

6: Devil in the White City is great! I enjoyed following both story lines... Though if it were fictional it would have been better for the story lines to connect more.

maaliskuu 20, 2007, 11:45am

Jim Butcher writes a fanatasy series called The Dresden Files that takes place in an alternate Chicago (and some of its surroundings) where magic exists.

The series has also been made into a tv show recently on the sci-fi channel....but the books are a 100 times better.

huhtikuu 20, 2012, 9:01am

There are so many great ones for Illinois! Chicago has a million options. Here's a bunch I found...

huhtikuu 20, 2012, 9:52am

I always think of Mark Costello's The Murphy Stories and Middle Murphy. Particularly the short story, "The Soybean Capital of the World."