Chicago kids' books
Chicago has a rich literary tradition, and while Saul Bellow and Nelson Algren may not have written for the picture-book set, the Windy City makes more than a few appearances in kids’ literature. Here are some recent titles that give a classic view of the city.
W Is for Windy City by Steven and Debbie Layne, Sleeping Bear, $17.95. Chicago gets the alphabet-guide treatment in this book by the Laynes. Yes, you probably think you’ve seen it all before, but a book that rhymes “A is for Art Institute / or Adler Planetarium. / And if we want a ‘triple A,’ / we’ll add the Shedd Aquarium,” scores some solid poetry points. For ages 9–12.
Beaver Is Lost by Elisha Cooper, Schwartz & Wade, $17.99. In this near-wordless adventure book, Beaver hops aboard a log that’s shipped to Chicago, and while attempting to get home, he frolics through the cityscape. And since it’s wordless, you can provide the narration. For ages 4–8.
Larry Gets Lost in Chicago by John Skewes and Michael Mullin, Sasquatch, $16.95. We swear we’re not trying to tell your kids it’s cool to get lost, but hey, it’s not a bad way to see the city. In this one, Larry the dog gets separated from his owner and tries to ask “people” like the Picasso sculpture for help. For ages 3 and up.
123 Chicago by Puck, Duo Press, $8.95. In this very cool counting book, kids learn their numbers and their Chicago landmarks (including Chicago hot dogs). For preschool age.