The Third Coast by Thomas Dyja
When Chicago Built the American Dream

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This gallery of vivid portraits makes for an intensely engaging book, notable for its intellectual breadth, arms-wide research and high-octane prose that keeps it riding high over the mass of details.
-NY Times

Synopsis

A critically acclaimed history of Chicago at mid-century, featuring many of the incredible personalities that shaped American culture
 
Before air travel overtook trains, nearly every coast-to-coast journey included a stop in Chicago, and this flow of people and commodities made it the crucible for American culture and innovation. In luminous prose, Chicago native Thomas Dyja re-creates the story of the city in its postwar prime and explains its profound impact on modern America—from Chess Records to Playboy, McDonald’s to the University of Chicago. Populated with an incredible cast of characters, including Mahalia Jackson, Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, Chuck Berry, Sun Ra, Simone de Beauvoir, Nelson Algren, Gwendolyn Brooks, Studs Turkel, and Mayor Richard J. Daley, The Third Coast recalls the prominence of the Windy City in all its grandeur.
 

About Thomas Dyja

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Thomas Dyja is the author of three novels and two works of nonfiction. He also worked as an editor. A native of Chicago’s Northwest Side, he was once called “a real Chicago boy” by Studs Terkel.
 
Published April 18, 2013 by Penguin Books. 544 pages
Genres: History, War. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for The Third Coast
All: 3 | Positive: 3 | Negative: 0

NY Times

Good
Reviewed by Scott Turow on May 16 2013

This gallery of vivid portraits makes for an intensely engaging book, notable for its intellectual breadth, arms-wide research and high-octane prose that keeps it riding high over the mass of details.

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Kirkus

Good
on Jan 13 2013

A valuable contribution to the history of Chicago, worthy of a place alongside William Cronon’s Nature’s Metropolis...

Read Full Review of The Third Coast: When Chicago... | See more reviews from Kirkus

NY Journal of Books

Good
Reviewed by Stephen Roulac on Apr 18 2013

This book will appeal to those interested in culture and sociology, place and urban affairs, and, of course, Chicago.

Read Full Review of The Third Coast: When Chicago... | See more reviews from NY Journal of Books

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79%

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