Thursday, October 13, 2011

the white city

It’s high time for an update!
I recently read the book Devil in the White City by Erik Larson, a book deep with history and detail, but also rich with imagination and incredibly compelling. The author tells the story of the World’s Fair of 1893, which the City of Chicago hosted in celebration of the bicentennial of the Columbian exploration of the New World. But right alongside this story, Larson tells the fascinating tale of H.H. Holmes, a mass-murderer who ran a hotel during the time of the Fair and committed innumerable crimes during the span of two years. Sometimes the book really creeped me out, and I even had a dream about a murder while I was reading it (!), but mainly I was sucked into the story and the way the author intertwined the two tales. If you haven’t read it yet, I’d recommend it!
I’ve wanted to read this book for years now - ever since it topped the bestseller list - but somehow reading it happened to coincide perfectly with my time in Chicago. It was amazing to read all about the city’s great architects as I rode and walked past buildings they built, places they visited, or scenery that inspired them. What’s more, during the time I spent reading this book, I also signed a lease on an apartment in Chicago! Yay :) I moved over the past weekend, and am so thrilled to be here and really look forward to spending more time exploring Chicago and all it has to offer. But right now, work has got me pretty occupied, as our annual meeting is in a week or so and I’m preparing for my first business trip! 
In other reading news, I also read this little book by Mitch Albom called Have a Little Faith. I’ve never read anything by him, never got pulled into the whole Tuesdays with Morrie thing, but now I’m rethinking it, because I really enjoyed this book. Just like Devil in the White City, this book is one great story made of two intertwining tales, one of a aging rabbi, one an inner-city Detroit pastor and missions director. This story reminded me yet again that we’re more similar than different, in the end, and that no matter what faith we have or what religion we stand behind that when we have a little faith the world is a better place. And as with most books I’ve read, I recommend this one, especially since it’s a quick yet powerful read. Now I’ve got to add some more Mitch Albom to my list..... But right now I’m reading The Widow Cliquot, the story of the woman behind Veuve Clicquot champagne. Earlier this year I read about Clicquot Inc.’s most recent female entrepreneur, so I’ve been enjoying reading about it’s first.