Library Staff reads

We’ve got work to do. But somehow, we still manage to find time to read a book. Or listen to an audiobook. Or watch a movie. Or binge-watch a TV show. Or flip through a magazine.

We’d like to know what y’all are reading too! So, please feel free to let us know in the comments.

Once Dead by Richard Phillips

A prequel to the “Rho Agenda” series. The series is a blend of sci-fi and thriller. One of the main characters, Jack, is exceedingly good at not dying. This book explains why.



The Survival Doctor’s Complete Handbook: what to do when help is not on the way by James Hubbard

Lots of practical first aid tips and common sense. Also debunks some medical myths. Very easy to read.

~She Who Shall Not Be Named

Cedar Cove (TV Show)

The show is about small town life and the people that make up the town. It is also based on a book series by Debbie Macomber. I watch it because I was looking through Netflix for something to watch.



Ink and Bone by Rachel Caine

Ruthless and supremely powerful, the Great Library is now a presence in every major city, governing the flow of knowledge to the masses because the personal ownership of books is expressly forbidden. Jess Brightwell believes in the value of the Library, but the majority of his knowledge comes from illegal books obtained by his family who are involved in the thriving black market.


Gilmore Girls Season 7

I missed a lot of episodes in the last season so it was great to finish the series.


 The Exorcist by William Peter Blatty


I watched this movie over the weekend and I wanted to see how it compared to the original book.



The Gunslinger by Stephen King

This is a very weird book. The setting can be off putting with a blend of old west and modern times combined in different worlds.

This is the first in the Dark Tower series and is being made into a movie. My rule is to always read the book before watching the movie. The movie is almost never as good as the book and I’m looking forward to see how movie makers make the weird series of events in this book unfold.

~Stunt Clerk #3

The drawing of the three by Stephen King

I’m glad I persevered through the first book and I do have to say that I’ve tried many times over the years to read that book. The second book is a faster pace and much more interesting and the jumping between worlds isn’t as off putting because I stayed the course and read the first book to get a good understanding on how the story is starting to unfold. This story is now at the point where the characters are alive in my imagination and I’ll hate to finish reading about them. I’m now looking forward to finishing the Dark Tower series.

~Stunt Clerk #3

The art of raising a puppy by Monks of New Skete


This is an oldie but goodie full of sound advice on how to raise a puppy. This is the book I go to when I want to review how to train a dog.


~Stunt Clerk #3

Cesar’s rules: your way to train a well-behaved dog by Cesar Millan

This book is easy to read and full of common sense on how to raise up a dog. It also discusses how to change your thinking when it comes to being a great companion for your furry friend.

~Stunt Clerk #3

Library staff picks

We’ve got work to do. But somehow, we still manage to find time to read a book. Or listen to an audiobook. Or watch a movie. Or binge-watch a TV show. Or flip through a magazine.

We’d like to know what y’all are reading too! So, please feel free to let us know in the comments.

  Complete Krav Maga: the ultimate guide to over 250 self-defense and combative techniques by Darren Levine & John Whitmas

The latest craze in self-defense. Who wouldn’t want to know how to knock down an attacker?


The Battle of Darcy Lane by Tara Altebrando.

It is a Junior Fiction book about bullying, not knowing where you stand with friends and foes and wanting to fit in. Once again I was attracted to it by the cover art and it turned out to be a good book. I would definitely recommend it to a young reader.


  Someone Knows My Name by Lawrence Hill.

It is about a young girl named Meena who is taken from her homeland in Africa by slave captors. She has to learn how to fend for/depend on herself. It is very hard to give a condensed summary of this book as it is long and steeped in history. It’s an amazing read that helps you imagine what slave life was like. This book was turned into a mini-series on the channel BET called “The Book of Negros” and that’s how I found out about the book. I recommend either one.


Sanctuary: Season 1
Sanctuary (TV series)

It is about the extraordinary creatures that live on earth and the people who help them. Getting to join these people on their adventures to all four corners of the earth is thrilling. Are you ready for the adventure and to encounter creatures that you’ve only heard about in stories?


  The 100 (TV series)

97 years after a nuclear war, a community of survivors lives on a space station. It is decided to send 100 teenagers to Earth’s surface to find out whether the planet is again habitable.

~a volunteer

  Cat Running by Zilpha Keatley Snyder

Set in California during the Dust Bowl era. Cat is the fastest runner in her school, at least until a destitute ‘Okie’ family comes to town.

I started reading this to keep myself entertained while hanging out at DuncanSwitch this past weekend.

Library staff reads

Product Details Rise by Mira Grant

A collection of short stories set in the “Newsflesh” universe. Basically, it’s about a zombie apocalypse with the twist that human civilization DIDN’T completely collapse.


Product Details Grimm (TV series)

This takes a spin on the Grimm fairy tales. What if what they wrote was the real deal? You think you might know your fairy tales.


 Product Details Sweet by Emmy Laybourne

Laurel regrets accepting her friend Viv’s invitation to go on a luxurious celebrity cruise launching the trendy new diet sweetener Solu. She’s too seasick to even try the sweetener and she’s already completely embarrassed herself in front of celebrity host Tom Forelli–the hottest guy ever! Tom and Laurel notice the passengers acting really strange and the shocking side effects of Solu are exposed.


Product Details
Collapse, by Jared Diamond, who also wrote Guns, Germs, and Steel.

Diamond seeks to answer the question of why various civilizations of the past vanished into antiquity, and what lessons we can learn from them (as well as from those that still survive) in order to avoid a similar fate for ourselves. His survey sweeps the globe and the timeline, covering societies past and present from places such as Easter Island, the Yucatan peninsula, the American southwest, Greenland, Japan, Rwanda, and Australia.


The Cookies & Cups Cookbook: 125+ sweet & savory recipes reminding you to Always Eat Dessert First
Cookies & Cups cookbook by Shelly Jaronsky

I’m always looking for a new nummy recipe. Regardless of the title, I’m probably going to try the “Essential Blueberry Streusel Muffins.” Nom, nom.



Some of the staff (and staff-in-laws) are playing this. We also are a PokeStop.

Library picks

Here’s what the library staff are reading this week… You may notice we’re a bit short on staff members this week. It seems some of them were too busy reading to actually tell me the titles. Silly bookworms!

Use the comments to tell us what you’re reading.

  Smallville (season 4)

It was the weekend of July 4th. What’s more American than Superman?


When by Victoria Laurie. It’s about a teenage girl who can see death dates on people’s foreheads, but the question is, can she do anything to change them? It’s a good mystery with drama and suspense. I liked it a lot.


One Crazy Summer by Rita Williams-Garcia. A junior fiction book about 3 young sisters who live in Brooklyn, New York. They travel to Oakland, California to visit their mother who abandoned them and along the way meet a lot of different characters. It’s a coming of age trilogy; a fun book that definitely take you on a journey.


  View from the Cheap Seats, by Neil Gaiman. This is only the second book by Neil Gaiman I’ve read, but I love his writing and have become fond of his blog. So being able to read all of these “selected nonfiction” pieces is enjoyable. Recommended.


  The Secrets of Attraction by Robin Constantine

I love a fun teen summer romance novel that’s a quick read!


  Creativity, Inc. : overcoming the unseen forces that stand in the way of true inspiration, by Edwin E Catmull. The book was  a recommendation from a tech podcast that I listen to. When reading this book you will get a glimpse of behind the scene at Pixar Animation. Also the creative process and the struggles that they went through to become what they are today. It was a wonderful read to get some new fresh ideas.

~ Emma

Staff picks week of June 27, 2016

As will eventually become a regular feature, here is a round-up of what the staff is reading this week. You may notice that there are more titles mentioned than staff. Therefore, I must inform you that some of our staff are greedy and they try to READ ALL THE THINGS!

We’d like to know what y’all are reading too! So, please feel free to let us know in the comments.



Tribe, by Sebastian Junger.

Tribe: On Homecoming and Belonging

On the surface, it’s about veterans, PTSD, and coming home from combat. But in a deeper sense, it’s really an examination of how human societies work, and what it means to be a part of a group, whether that group is the size of a family or the size of a nation. It’s a short read, but a dense one, at just under 200 pages.

Read by Dennis the Director.



Jessica Jones by Brain Bendis.

Jessica Jones is a super hero turned private investigator. This volume only gives you a small glimpse into her mysterious past. It is just enough to want you to come back for more.

Read by Stunt Clerk #3




Consumer Reports August 2016

“I kind of ruined my life by going to college” is the cover story and I found very informative with a college age child and another one who will be looking at colleges within a couple of years. It gives an in depth look into the crisis many people face when saddled with huge amounts of student loan debt and gives possible solutions in how to avoid getting into the same financial hole.

“Shedding light on solar power” was also a wonderful article. If you ever thought about getting solar panels installed, this article gives tips on how to go about doing so. It also talks about tax credits available when you get solar panels installed.

Read by Stunt Clerk #3

Explorers by Andrea DePorti

It is a very interesting book about people who dared to explore unmapped territory in their time. It is filled with photographs that are fascinating to study.

Read by Stunt Clerk #3



Ever Present Danger by Kathy Herman

It is a fluff book that is silly in how it copies stuff that is found on TV or movies. However, it is still very entertaining and is for anyone who can read a book and not take seriously some of the redone content.

Read by Stunt Clerk #3



Z Nation (tv show)

Not at well known as “The Walking Dead” but just as awesome. Lots of zombies, of all ages, and A QUEST that could result in a cure for zombism. Zombiehood? Zombification?

Watched by 5K. (You’ll get that after you watch.)




The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (movie)

I saw the movie and really liked it so I just checked out the book. I prefer to read the book before seeing the movie but I’ll read the other two before I see them!

Watched by Millie.




John F. Kennedy and PT-109 by Richard Tregaskis

Product DetailsI was ten when President Kennedy was assassinated and every boy back then was enthralled with the gripping story of Kennedy’s PT-109 being sliced in half and how John Kennedy led the crew to safety. We all built the PT-109 model. So when this book came in as a donation and I saw it I just had to read it, and I could hardly put it down.

This book covers the life of President John F. Kennedy during his tour of duty in the Pacific theater of WWII. The bulk of the book is about the period of his command of the Patrol Torpedo (PT) boat, number 109. Their craft was sliced in half one night by a Japanese destroyer and he helped guide the surviving crew to safety. The lessons he learned that night served him well when he became president seventeen years later.

Read by Ron.


The story of D-day: June 6, 1944 by Bruce Bliven

On the Sunday before the 72nd anniversary of D-day, earlier in this month of June, one of our church pastors illustrated part of his sermon using an account recorded in this book. So, after the service I borrowed his copy. D-day, the allied invasion of France to begin to take back Europe, was the turning point in the European theater of WWII.

D-day, June 6, 1944, was the largest sea invasion in the history of world. Thousands of ships. And air support with paratroopers landing behind the German lines. The British, Canadian and American forces, after years of intensely secret preparations in England, stormed the beaches at Normandy and beaches north along the coast. Thousands were killed and wounded. Men scaled cliffs using grappling hooks and rope. The going was much slower and harder than anticipated but they held the beach and eventually the cliffs overlooking the beaches and the Germans were on the run. Thus began “the beginning of the end,” as Winston Churchill described it.

Read by Ron.

Who asked you by Terry McMillian,

A Grandmother is forced to raise her grandsons after their mother disappears and everyone has an opinion about how it should be done.

I’m all about cover art, so the cover drew me in. I do judge books by their cover.

Read by Candace.



The Passenger by Lisa Lutz.

It’s a book about a woman on the run who assumes multiple identities.

The synopsis hooked me and it was a good book. Filled with suspense; you never knew what was going to happen next.

Read by Candace.



I am Princess X by Cherie Priest

Once upon a time, two best friends created a princess together. Libby drew the pictures, May wrote the tales, and their heroine, Princess X, slayed all the dragons and scaled all the mountains their imaginations could conjure.

Read by Danene.



Lab Girl by Hope Jahren.

In the process of cataloging it and trying to determine where it needed to be in the library, I was intrigued by her approach, so I checked it out. Jahren weaves threads from her life as a scientist with explanations of various biological phenomena, and manages to write about both poetically. 4.5 stars.

Read by Hannah the Cataloger.



Infectious Diabetes by Doug A. Kaufmann

Actually this is his second book, he writes about how diabetes is an overgrowth of fungus in our system, cause by the food we eat, fungus feeds on sugar, if we cut sugar completely out of our system the fungus dies off therefore the body gets rid of the “diabetes disease”.

Read by Olga.

Weekly Book Spotlight

This week, I read a series of books titled “Black Tide Rising” by John Ringo. There are 4 books in the series and I’ll list them in order at the end of this post.

This series is about the Smith family, whose dad is a ‘prepper,’ plus he used to be Australian military. It starts out with news slowly beginning to spread of a weird plague that seems to make people incredibly violent and aggressive. If you’re thinking zombies, well, you’re almost right. In this story, people don’t become zombies after they die. Instead, they turn zombie before they die.

The main point of the story is Search and Rescue on the Atlantic Ocean. The Smith family gets the movement going and the rescue effort keeps getting bigger as they find more survivors to join their mission.

My two favorite parts: the character of Faith, who is all kinds of awesome, and a description of a tank trying to do a U-turn.

  1. Under a Graveyard Sky
  2. To Sail a Darkling Sea
  3. Islands of Rage and Hope
  4. Strands of Sorrow


Our Special Collections

The Library’s Special Collections

If you’re interested in learning about your past, then take a look through our Genealogy collection.

You’ll find books about how to start researching your family tree. Then you can take a look at census records, cemetery rolls, and marriage records. There are also yearbooks from local schools (including Duncanville) and scrapbooks. We even have old telephone directories.

Texas: the state so big that it demands its own non-fiction collection.

We’ve been a Texas Heritage Resource Center since 1982. Here you’ll find books that are solely about Texas. This is also where you’ll find biographies of Texans.