“One of the joys of reading Sister Carrie has been to follow Carrie on her journey through the streets and sights of Chicago in 1889,” says avid literary traveler and bookseller Margie White of The Bookstore in Glen Ellyn, Illinois.
Theodore Dreiser’s tale is the story of a young girl who leaves behind life in rural Wisconsin to seek fame and fortune in Chicago, becoming a wealthy man’s mistress and later a celebrated actress. Now hailed as a classic, Sister Carrie was considered scandalous when it was published in 1900. Thirty years after it initially appeared in print, Nobel Prize winner Sinclair Lewis declared, “Dreiser’s great first novel…came to housebound and airless America like a great free Western wind, and to our stuffy domesticity gave us the first fresh air since Mark Twain and Whitman.”
Margie has created a self-guided walking tour of Sister Carrie sites in Chicago, from the department stores where the titular character seeks employment to the locale of a clandestine meeting with a suitor. So, Windy City residents and visitors, if you’re up for a literary trek through the city, check out the tour on The Bookstore’s blog: justthebookstore.blogspot.com.