04 October 2009

Walking Chicago; Ryan Ver Berkmoes

Walking Chicago: 31 Tours of the Windy City's Classic Bars, Scandalous Sites, Historic Architecture, Dynamic Neighborhoods, and Famous Lakeshore Walking Chicago: 31 Tours of the Windy City's Classic Bars, Scandalous Sites, Historic Architecture, Dynamic Neighborhoods, and Famous Lakeshore by Ryan Ver Berkmoes
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I admit it: while traveling I like looking at architecture and I'm not above peering into windows (hey, if you don't want me to peek, get curtains!) When I was in Chicago this past July I got to do some of that, and then I took one of those bus tours of South Side, which I'd not really been to before. Unfortunately, the driver/guide spent most of his time telling us that the abandoned factory to our right/left was now condos going for some large dollar amount (something I could have guessed given the signage on the buildings) when he wasn't telling us minute details about the Obamas.

As we drove along, it was clear that there was information missing, so being a good librarian I went to the nearest bookstore to find a good guidebook. This was the book I chose and what a good choice it was. The author's serious discussion of the architecture and history is nicely mixed with a humorous tone (telling us to beware of little girls in front of the American Place store, for example) and belongs in the same family as such books as LondonWalks and ParisWalks.


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