Daley's final One Book announced: Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere
As Mayor Daley ties up plot lines across the city throughout his final months in office, he announced the 20th selection for his brainchild, One Book, One Chicago, the citywide book club that he helped launch a decade ago. Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman was revealed as this spring’s novel in the nationally acclaimed program.
In celebration of One Book, One Chicago’s ten-year run, and Daley’s final involvement with the program, a large book-shaped cake was served thanking the mayor. From a distance, the cake appeared to be a genuine book; its hard cover ready to be flipped open revealing crisp paper pages. Daley went on to say that the program is a way to unify the people of every neighborhood and that the future of Chicago will be determined largely by our children’s ability to read. “One Book, One Chicago reminds us we can’t just tell young people reading is important—adults must set the example.”
Neverwhere tells the story of Richard Mayhew, an ordinary office worker in London whose life is fantastically altered after he takes on the role of a good Samaritan and assists an injured woman on the city’s streets. He soon experiences his very existence snuffed out from the reality he’s always known as he tumbles into the ultra-dimensional world of “London Below,” a darkly surreal city brimming with all things supernatural.
Two free special events will be held with Gaiman. The first will be a conversation with Chicago author Audrey Niffenegger (The Time Traveler’s Wife) at the Harold Washington Library’s Pritzker Auditorium on April 12, 6pm. The following day at 7pm, he will be reading and giving a lecture at the Rockefeller Memorial Chapel at the University of Chicago.
To complement Neverwhere’s setting, you can attend a free tour of Chicago’s Pedway, a network of underground passageways that connect the city above to “Chicago Below” (April 6 & 8, 5:30pm). For those more scientifically inclined, join cosmologist and theoretical physicist Lawrence Krauss as he lectures on the possibilities of parallel universes (April 20, 6pm).