About Centuries and Sleuths

Celebrating its independence in specialty bookselling for 30 years, Centuries & Sleuths Bookstore's atmosphere is warm and friendly, with oak/cherry bookcases, shelves clearly labeled with the historical era / topic, mystery, or related subjects of their books, and comfortable seating, inviting you to browse your chosen subject(s). You won't "get lost in the stacks", but you can definitely get lost in the books.

If you're unsure where to start, our knowledgeable, helpful staff will be happy to act as your guide through fact or fiction, history or mystery, and adults' or children’s books. We'll even giftwrap your book purchases upon request.

Often, you can discuss your opinion about a book with other like-minded (or not) readers, or even with the author who excited your curiosity, rapture, or dissent, because five different reader/writer discussion  groups meet here regularly; and we host frequent author and community events.

You can follow our events, order books online, and see "staff picks" of books we recently enjoyed, or our groups are discussing, on our web page, Facebook, or Instagram. Or sign up to receive our monthly newsletter.  By all means, get to know us better!

Dear Friends,

We are profoundly grateful for your book and gift certificate orders that have helped sustain us during the pandemic.

With some trepidation, we tentatively move to stage IV in the Illinois COVID-19 precautions. Since we're not entirely out of the woods yet, we do so within the current guidelines:


Wear your mask, even if fully vaccinated for COVID-19, in respect for customers with compromised immune systems, or who cannot be vaccinated yet

Use hand sanitizer (yours or ours) before handling books; or wash your hands

Keep a 2 bookcase width between you and other customers

If attending a discussion group, please don't move chairs closer together or bring food

 Phone (708/771-7243) and online orders  (cns7419@sbcglobal.net )  are accepted in the usual manner. 

Thank you all, wishing you wellness..
Centuries and Sleuths


Author Discussion & Signing with Local Columnist and Retired Detective: John Rice

Author Discussion & Signing with Local Columnist and Retired Detective: John Rice.

Title: The Doll with the Sad Face: The Adventures of a Family Man Private Detective.

Date: September 17, 2021

Day: Friday

Time: 7-9:00PM


Private Detective Mike Sullivan is fighting to save his family detective agency. As he enters middle-age, the flow of new assignments has slowed to a trickle. The forces against him include a worldwide recession, and the loss of his well-heeled clients. He fears for the future of his wife and two kids. After decades of high-stakes investigation, he is forced to take whatever work he can find. Sullivan does not fit the mold of world-weary detectives but can be as tough as any of them when it comes to taking on difficult assignments and caring for his family. His work takes him from gritty Chicago neighborhoods to North Shore mansions and quiet farms. His clients range from top law firms in lofty offices to storefront lawyers struggling to make a buck, along with desperate folks and their unique needs. Sullivan strives to keep his agency solvent, aided by two extraordinary assistants and the cops and fellow detectives who make up his world. It's not a world of murders, gun battles or high-speed chases but it can be a dark world all the same. Sullivan sheds light on corporate crime, personal tragedies and institutional injustice. After years of success, he finds himself fighting harder than ever to serve his clients and save his family.


About the Author

John Rice is a columnist/private detective, who has seen his business and family thrive in Forest Park. He thoroughly enjoys life in the village and still gets a thrill smelling Red Hots, watching softball and strolling through cemeteries.



Centuries & Sleuths Top Ten Bestselling Authors of 2020

Centuries & Sleuths Bookstore's Bestselling Authors of 2020. These Bestsellers are determined by a variety of factors (e.g. Author Signings, Mystery & History Discussion Groups' choices, Special Programs, Newspaper & Magazine listings, etc,) in addition to customer & staff recommendations.



Death of a Wandering Wolf (A HUNGARIAN TEA HOUSE MYSTERY #2) Cover Image
ISBN: 9781984804846
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Berkley - June 30th, 2020

Staff Pick Badge
Boneheads and Brainiacs: Heroes and Scoundrels of the Nobel Prize in Medicine Cover Image
ISBN: 9781610353502
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Quill Driver Books - March 10th, 2020

Staff Pick Badge
The Hidden Key (Steve Stilwell Mystery #3) Cover Image
ISBN: 9781603815802
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Camel Press - April 14th, 2020

Staff Pick Badge
Archie Goes Home (Nero Wolfe Mysteries #15) Cover Image
ISBN: 9781504059886
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Mysteriouspress.Com/Open Road - May 19th, 2020

Murder Knocks Twice: A Mystery (The Speakeasy Murders #1) Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250190833
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Minotaur Books - April 30th, 2019

Tales of Forgotten Chicago Cover Image
ISBN: 9780809337811
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Southern Illinois University Press - July 28th, 2020

The Black Cage Cover Image
ISBN: 9780727889164
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Severn House Publishers - February 4th, 2020

Staff Pick Badge
A Promised Land Cover Image
ISBN: 9781524763169
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Crown - November 17th, 2020

Des Plaines River Anthology Cover Image
Email or call for price.
ISBN: 9780989053518
Published: Allium Press - October 15th, 2013

This Is Really War: The Incredible True Story of a Navy Nurse POW in the Occupied Philippines Cover Image
ISBN: 9781641600767
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Chicago Review Press - May 7th, 2019

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