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Other titles in the Chicago Visions and Revisions series:
Hack: Stories from a Chicago Cabby Dmitry Samarov
Synopses & Reviews
Cabdrivers and their yellow taxis are as much a part of the cityscape as the high-rise buildings and the subway. We hail them without thought after a wearying day at the office or an exuberant night on the town. And, undoubtedly, taxi drivers have stories to telland#8212;of farcical local politics, of colorful passengers, of changing neighborhoods and clandestine shortcuts. No one knows a cityand#8217;s streetsand#8212;and thus its heartand#8212;better than its cabdrivers. And from behind the wheel of his taxi, Dmitry Samarov has seen more of Chicago than most Chicagoans will hope to experience in a lifetime.
An artist and painter trained at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Samarov began driving a cab in 1993 to make ends meet, and heand#8217;s been working as a taxi driver ever since. In Hack: Stories from a Chicago Cab, he recounts tales that will delight, surprise, and sometimes shock the most seasoned urbanite. We follow Samarov through the rhythms of a typical week, as he waits hours at the garage to pick up a shift, ferries comically drunken passengers between bars, delivers prostitutes to their johns, and inadvertently observes drug deals. There are long waits with other cabbies at Oand#8217;Hare, vivid portraits of street corners and their regular denizens, amorous Cubs fans celebrating after a game at Wrigley Field, and customers who are pleasantly surprised that Samarov is whiteand#8212;and tell him so. Throughout, Samarovand#8217;s own drawingsand#8212;of his fares, of the taxi garage, and of a variety of Chicago street scenesand#8212;accompany his stories. In the grand tradition of Nelson Algren, Saul Bellow, Mike Royko, and Studs Terkel, Dmitry Samarov has rendered an entertaining, poignant, and unforgettable vision of Chicago and its people.
About the Author
Dmitry Samarov earned his BFA in painting and printmaking at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1993 and began driving a cab that same year. His work has been shown at the Chicago Tourism Center, the Merchandise Mart, the Bowery Gallery, and Brandeis University. Samarov is the creator of the blog Hack, stories from which have been featured in the Chicago Reader and elsewhere.
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