For the Love of Mike: More of the Best of Mike Royko (2001)
Early Royko: Up Against It in Chicago (2010)
Royko in Love: Mike's Letters to Carol (2010)
Being the smartest alderman in Chicago's City Council is something like being the tallest midget in the circus.
Winner of the 1972 Pulitzer Prize for commentary, Royko's columns were a fixture in Chicago newspapers for more than three decades. He grew up in a Polish neighborhood on the Northwest Side of Chicago, living in an apartment above a bar, and drew on his childhood experiences to become the voice of the Everyman Chicago. "…his writing was distinctive and memorable and in its time the closest thing to lasting literature in a daily paper," Jacob Weisberg wrote for Slate. "Royko could make you laugh and make you think, stir outrage at a heartless bureaucrat, or bring a tear to the eye when he flashed a glimpse of the heart hidden beneath his hard shell." He wrote over 7,500 daily columns for three newspapers, the Chicago Daily News, the Chicago Sun-Times, and the Chicago Tribune. Many of his columns are collected in books, but his most famous book remains Boss, a devastating portrait of Richard J. Daley and machine politics that New York columnist Jimmy Breslin called "the best book ever written about a city of this country."