Cover of Mount Chicago

Mount Chicago

A Novel

Adam Levin

I love Adam Levin’s hyperliterate maximalism, and am biased towards his depictions of Chicago as so recognizeable as the Chicago that I know and lived in for 20 years. This book was filled with loving nods and indulgent depictions of places that I know well and miss very much.

This book is a VERY big 592 pages, and it’s not for everybody. Levin combines George Saunders’ pathos forged in the heat of absurdity with David Foster Wallace’s exhaustive exploration of every implication of his fictive creation. This book also leans very heavily into Knausgaardian autofiction, with Levin creating a stand-up comedian version of himself that resembles in spirit the versions of self actual comedians offer of themselves. And while frequently hilarious, there is a pervasive darkness here that not everybody will go for.

If any of those signposts interest you, you’re in for a treat. If they feel more like red flags, save it for us Levin-heads.

Book Info

National Geographic Books (2022)
ISBN/EAN Product Code
Publisher Description

From the award-winning author of Bubblegum and The Instructions, a daring new novel about the irony, the humor, and the heartbreak of survivorship. “Adam Levin is one of our wildest writers and our funniest.” –George Saunders, bestselling, award-winning author of Lincoln in the Bardo A one-in-ten-billion natural disaster devastates Chicago. A Jewish comedian, his most devoted fan, and the city’s mayor must struggle to move forward while the world—quite literally—caves beneath their feet. With this polyphonic tale of Chicago-style politics and political correctness, stand-up comedy and Jewish identity, celebrity, drugs, and animal psychology, Levin has constructed a monument to laughter, love, art, and resilience in an age of spectacular loss. (Publisher’s Description)

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