Divergent/Insurgent/Allegiant: Veronica Roth
In this series, Chicago is a torn-apart, worn-down city where Tris and Four live. Its shadow remains but the city itself is barely recognizable. Every now and then, Roth will provide a well-known visual of Chicago usually when Tris is outside her faction's boundaries, and the reader is reminded the truly unpredictable nature of the future. Even though the story itself could be based in any big city, I think setting it in Chicago added a sense of Midwestern reality, helping offset the futuristic feel with a down-to-earth sensibility. With the final book in the trilogy out this October and the Divergent movie coming next year (see Roth’s post on visiting the set here), I imagine we will only be hearing more about this amazing trilogy in the months to come.
Time Between Us: Tamara Ireland Stone
It’s 1995 in Chicago when Anna and Bennett meet in the snow and ice. On the outside, their romance seems simple and nostalgic, much like the version of Chicago that the reader sees in this story. Chicago is portrayed through Anna’s parents’ bookshop, their suburban-type home and her typical high school. It’s a wholesome Chicago, which only begins to break as the truth about Bennett’s time-traveling abilities is revealed. For Anna, Chicago is home, but it’s also a net under which she’s trapped. Will she have the courage to escape, or will she wait forever to see if Bennett manages to travel back to her windy city?
Will Grayson, Will Grayson: John Green & David LevithanChicago is a city of coincidence when Will Grayson meets Will Grayson on one snowy night downtown. Green and Levithan weave together the story of two teens, each with their own distinct voice, through an examination of relationships. The story has a suburban, could-happen-anywhere feel but it also highlights the quirkiness of Chicago when the Wills meet in an adult bookstore. Green and Levithan have many outstanding books to each of their respective names, but such an accomplishment as this co-authored novel only makes me wish they will someday meet again, maybe in Chicago.
A few more Chicago-centric adventures:
XVI: Julia Karr
Perfect Chemistry: Simone Elkeles
Cold Fury: T.M. Goeglein
Hope the wind stays away!