City Cast

Best Book Clubs For Every Chicago Bibliophile

Sidney Madden
Sidney Madden
Posted on September 12
The Visible Man Review book club

The Visible Man Review book club in 2022. (Vincent D. Johnson / Tribune / Getty)

Who else is curling up with a book now that the days are getting cloudy and cool? Meet up with fellow Chicago bibliophiles to discuss the books you’re reading.

Best for Black Women: Black Girls Read

📘 ”The Coldest Winter Ever” at the Chicago Bee Branch Library Sunday

The club reads fiction and nonfiction by women authors from across the African diaspora.

Best for Runners: Read & Run Chicago

📘 ”The Warmth of Other Suns” Sept. 23 and more

This reading–running book club creates routes inspired by books about Chicago, ending at a restaurant or spot where runners can rest and discuss.

📘 “Crying in the Bathroom” Sept. 24

Not comfortable meeting up IRL or prefer the convenience of Zoom? Join this club online every fourth Sunday of the month.

Best for Introverts: Silent Book Club

📘 Anything you want Sept. 24 or Sept. 28

The two Chicago chapters invite readers out to silently read together at Dorothy in Ukrainian Village and Nighthawk in Albany Park.

Best for Black Men: Visible Man Review

📘 ”Forty Million Dollar Slaves” Sept. 28

Founded by Chicago lawyer Alex Breland during the early days of the pandemic, members vote on books every month.

📘 “This One Summer” Oct. 2

The Andersonville store’s book club reads books that have long been challenged and books currently being targeted.

Best for South Asian Literature: DesiLit Book Club

📘 “The Candid Life of Meena Dave” Oct. 2

Around for almost 20 years, the Chicago chapter has gone completely virtual.

📘 ”The Tiger: A True Story of Vengeance and Survival” Oct. 5

Make friends, grab a beer, and discuss books at the monthly book club.

Best National Book Club: NoName Book Club

📘 “Vagabonds!” all month

The Bronzeville-born rapper’s book club has chapters across the country.

Best for Podcast Lovers: Nerdette Book Club

📘”The Vaster Wilds” for October

Like hearing smart friends talk about books’ plots and themes? The WBEZ podcast puts out a book club episode once a month. Listeners can read ahead of time and leave voicemails with their thoughts.

📘 Coming in November

The group has read books like “Mexican Gothic” and “The Haunting of Alejandra” as well as facilitated author meetups. At capacity now, the next book will be announced later this fall.

Best for Everyone: Chicago Public Library

📘 “There There” and a lot more!

One Book, One Chicago encourages residents to read the same book. Branches also offer all types of book clubs about cookbooks, graphic novels, literature, and more. Some libraries offer bilingual book clubs.

Best for Romance Lovers: The Last Chapter Bookstore


The new Roscoe Village romance bookstore is asking Chicagoans want they want out of a book club — weigh in!

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