LitCity312 Review: Uncharted Books

Uncharted Books (Used Books)
2630 N. Milwaukee Ave Chicago, IL 60647
Logan Square Neighborhood 
Mon. – Fri: 1 – 9pm
Sat. + Sun: 10am – 10pm


Location + Feel
Uncharted Books is located in a rustic, almost abandoned looking corner in Chicago’s Logan Square neighborhood, directly across from the Logan Blue Line. While the outside is immersed in various sorts of graffiti, from the moment you walk in you are immersed in a royal display of splendor. The atmosphere is certainly friendly, an ironic characteristic of the creaky wooden floors as you peruse. The aisle headers on the shelving units are taped on and handwritten, giving it an informality that’s refreshing. Toward the back end of the store, there is a bar-like counter filled with a cascaded array of books in no particular order or fashion. Against this same wall is deep blue and gold wallpaper with framed paintings hanging in the forefront. This, along with a luxurious looking purple velveteen couch, creates an atmosphere that is highly rustic and royal looking. The brick-adorned walls also offer a consistency of warmth and comfort, as if this place is merely someone’s personal library in a mansion. Toward the middle portion of the store, there is a dining room table from what looks like to be carved out of the 1920’s and near it, a gigantic wooden treasure chest with even more books scattered above it. This space appears to be nicely designed for literary readings, comfy cozy spots of relaxation. What better way to listen and appreciate story?

Book Display
As a whole, the bookstore is pretty traditional as far as its inclusion of kinds of books. Though small and huddled in a tight corner of the room, the children’s section is implied and subtle, with books scattered about, clearly not really an indication that Uncharted Books is meant for kids. Toward the back of the store, travel books make up a totally alien and separate section with the sports books having a similar fate. While the standard fiction and non-fiction genres come to fruition here, there is also a non-English language section which I appreciated. Finally, a huge Webster’s New International Dictionary sits on a podium in the middle portion of the store, in all of its thick illustrious glory: another hint of personalization in the midst of a very public place.

Parting Thoughts
Traditional yet cool. Rustic yet royal. Uncharted Books will serve anyone who likes to feel to be perusing an ancestor’s prized, personal library. From comfy seating to a friendly staff, this place is sure to suit anyone’s literary needs.

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Amanda Hanna

Amanda Hanna earned her Bachelor's Degree in English, with a concentration in Creative Writing, from DePaul University in June 2014. She plans to pursue her MA in Writing & Publishing, from DePaul, beginning in the fall of 2015. She was born in Chicago, but has lived in a variety of places throughout Southern California, such as Riverside, Orange County, and San Diego. Post high school, she attended a nineteen-day trip to Europe and visited Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Austria, England, and France. On her free time, Amanda loves to draw and paint, attend symphonies and plays, peruse museums, visit farmers' markets, and, of course, read and write. One of her favorite collections of short stories is J.D. Salinger’s, 'Nine Stories'.

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