On this day in 1986, Ferris Bueller's Day Off was released, in which Ferris skips school and has the greatest day possible in Chicago.
We celebrate with other books that take place in Chicago.
Cat Girl's Day Off by Kimberly Pauley. Nat has the stupidest super power ever-- she can talk to cats. But when Hollywood comes to town in order to film a remake of Ferris Bueller's Day Off at her high school, it might just come in handy. The lead actress is acting strangely. If her cat can be believed, it's because she's an impostor. Can Nat save the day?
The Comeback Season by Jennifer E. Smith. Ryan and Nick have their own reasons and secrets for skipping school to catch the Cubs on opening day, but when they run into each other at the game, everything changes.
Fire in the Streets by Kekla Magoon. In Chicago, 1968, 14-year-old Maxie lives in poverty with her mother and older brother. She believes in the work of the Black Panthers and desperately wants to be a member, but is constantly told that she's too young to do anything besides help out in the office.
Chasing Vermeer by Bue Balliet. A valuable painting was stolen, and the thief challenges the public to discover if the painting was a real Vermeer or a not. Petra and Calder are just kids, not even friends really, but they're surrounded by coincidences and weird patterns that put them right in the middle of this mystery. The first in a trilogy, follow it with The Wright 3.
The Espressologist by Kristina Springer. Jane's a barista who knows you can tell a lot by a person based on what they order. She even has a knack for setting people up based on their beverage of choice, but it gets a bit messy when her boss decides to use this talent as an in-store promotion.
An Off Year by Claire Zulkey. Cecily has always been the perfect college-prep student-- right classes, right grades, right extra-curriculars. But the transition life in college is more than she's ready for, so once she gets there, she turns around and comes home to try to figure out her next move.
The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros. Esperanza Cordero is growing up poor in Chicago. Told in short vignettes of her childhood and teen years, this slim novel introduces us to a character we'll never forget. This is one of those books that's taught in school that teens will actually enjoy reading.
Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan, narrated by MacLeod Andrews and Nick Podehl. Two high school students, both named Will Grayson, are having a horrible night when they meet. Then one Will Grayson starts dating the other Will Grayson's best friend. There's a girl named Jane, who has a boyfriend. There's a musical written, directed, choreographed, etc etc etc and starring Tiny Cooper, the said boy/best friend and the gayest large person on the plant, or the largest gay person.
The Jungle by Upton Sinclair. This classic is one many teens will read in American Lit. class. Jurgis is a recent immigrant to America who just wants to work an honest day's work to support his family. What he sees in the meat packing industry, both in how the food and the workers are treated spurs him to action.
What are your favorite books in Chicago? Bueller? Bueller?
Links to Amazon are an affiliate link. You can help support YA Reading List by purchasing any item (not just the one linked to!) through these links.