After Visiting Friends

after visiting friendsAfter Visiting Friends

Michael Hainey
Memoirs
Scribner
Hardcover, 320 pages
$26.00

The obituaries said that Michael Hainey’s father had died suddenly on Chicago’s North Side “after visiting friends.”  Michael was six-years-old (his father had been just thirty-five) and all through his youth and into adulthood he obsessed about the circumstances of his father’s death. When he himself reached his mid-30’s he began the task of unraveling that mystery. It took almost ten years, but the resulting story is not only a first-rate whodunit, but an intimate portrayal of his family and its secrets. Hainey, a journalist himself, provides a gritty view of the Chicago newspaper business of the mid-20th century. This is how a memoir should read!