Books to Celebrate Small Business Saturday

After the behemoth bargains at all the big box stores on Black Friday, and before the e-commerce deals on Cyber Monday, check out Chicago's neighborhood gems on Saturday.

American Express launched Small Business Saturday to help support local businesses that strengthen communities. Last year, small business owners generated an estimated $15.4 billion. Locations across the city have been helping get the word out in their neighborhoods to remind people to shop small and local! How successful will this Saturday be?

Here's a map you can search for businesses in your own neighborhood. We also have a couple guide books that may contain some previously undiscovered treasures: Discovering Vintage Chicago and Oldest Chicago. Not all of the entries will be small locally owned businesses, but most of them will be.

What's the most successful small business you patronize? Do you know if the owners are hoping to grow, or have they already grown? Small Giants is a fascinating look at 14 small businesses, from brewers to records storage, that are very successful but choose to remain small and concentrate on other factors of success besides expansion. 

But really, what's it like to run your own business? Boss Life tells the story of a real company, and what it's like to actually be the boss and the owner (custom furniture business owner Paul Downs) trying to keep it all afloat. This memoir deals with it all honestly: outside vendors, customer service, trying to keep employees motivated.   

Good Morning, Beautiful Business is the story of a woman who turned a small muffin shop into a thriving 200-seat restaurant that was one of the first to rely on local and organic food. Judy Wicks, owner of The White Dog Café, tells a great story about how people can do well by doing good. 

Tell us Chicagoans, what's your favorite go-to small business? 

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