Preserving Duncanville’s History

The Duncanville Public Library is looking for current and former Duncanville residents and City employees that would like to share their personal story with the community via a collection of mini-interviews to be published throughout the City’s communication channels. Inspired by Humans of New York, the Library hopes to capture and preserve the history, personality, and diversity of the community. Individuals from all religions, ethnicities, and ages are encouraged to participate free of charge. Interested persons should contact the Library’s Technical Services Librarian at 972-780-5097 or by email at holsen@ci.duncanville.tx.us.

Read more about the history of Duncanville.

You can read the first interview here!

Staff Reads

Hello? Is this thing on? **taps microphone** Hello? Testing, 1.2.3. testing…. Okay, well, I’m going to pretend that everybody is on their way to the library or Overdrive or a bookstore to look for some of our recommendations. Or maybe y’all are writing up some recommendations of your own. That would be fabulous. Either way, have a great day!

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

 

Les Miserables by Victor Hugo.

20 percent down, 80 percent to go. I’ve tried reading this before and faded out quickly; this time I’m finding the book far more engaging.

~Hannah

 

Tools of Titans by Tim Ferriss.

I was pleasantly surprised to realize that this book is far more than a summary of Tim’s many podcast interviews; instead, it’s more like notes from those podcasts on the habits, tricks, and routines that one could take from those interviewees and try for oneself. Like all of Tim’s books except his first, this one is large; like all of them, it is much more of a reference work than a book to read straight through. I am looking forward to learning from it.

~Hannah

The Sun is Also a Star  by Nicola Yoon

Natasha is a girl who believes in science and facts. Not fate, not destiny, or dreams that will never come true. She’s definitely not the kind of girl who meets a cute boy on a crowded New York City street and falls in love with him.

Daniel is the good son, the good student, living up to his parents’ high expectations. Never the poet or the dreamer. But when he sees her, he forgets about all that. Something about Natasha makes him think that fate has something much more extraordinary in store—for both of them.

This touching love story is beautifully written and is one of my new favorites. I could not put it down!

It is a New York Times bestseller, a National Book Award finalist, and a 2017 Michael L. Printz honor book. It is also in development for the big screen.

~Danene

A Dangerous Man: Lawrence After Arabia (DVD)

Wonderful, yet very disturbing, film about the vivisection of the Arab world by the WWI conquering powers, among them Great Brittan, France, and the US, et. al. T.E. Lawrence, a.k.a. Lawrence of Arabia, did all he could to help make the conquering forces hold to the long-standing agreements and promises made with and to those Arab peoples to have self-determination of their own lands and not be cut up and usurped by foreign powers.

~Ron

Product Details Avatar (DVD)

This movie is about going to a planet of science and exploration. It also had good story line about treating people and the planet with respect. The graphics of the movie are awesome and out of this world. I remember seeing this movie when it was out (in theaters) and it set my imagination on fire.

~Emma

 The Shannara Chronicles (TV Series)

This show is about an ancient tree that is dying. Then there is a quest to go to “Safe Haven” to try to find the cure for the tree. Also the most unlikely of people cross paths to band together to safe the human (and unhuman) race. This TV series reminds me of little bit of “Lord of the Rings”, “Eragon” type of storytelling. I watched the first episode and have been hooked ever since.

~Emma

New Earth by Ben Bova

Several scientist/astronauts are sent on an 80 year mission to a planet that seems as habitable as Earth. They travel in ‘cold sleep’ and when they wake upon arrival they discover that the expected backup missions were never launched. Earth was mostly overcome by repeated, massive flooding.

~Buffy the Netflix Watcher

2017 Everything Teen Expo

You’re invited to participate in the 2nd Best Southwest Everything Teen Expo 2017.

This is a community event that will enrich the lives of teens by connecting them with community, resources, services, and support. Teens ages 13-18 will learn about valuable resources, services and programs especially designed for them. They will connect and build positive relationships with professionals in their community through fun and engaging interactions. This event is planned and organized largely by teens from the Cities of DeSoto, Cedar Hill, Lancaster, and Duncanville. This a one day event that will feature workshops, motivational speakers, entertainment, giveaways and more. Teens may register for this free event at www.desototexas.gov/everythingteenexpo . The Teen Expo will be held on Saturday, April 8th, from 10 am – 3 pm at the DeSoto Civic Center. For more information, contact Ms. Marq Runnels, DeSoto Public Library Teen Volunteer Coordinator, at 972.230.9663 or mrunnels@desototexas.gov. The DeSoto Civic Center is located at 211 E. Pleasant Run Road, in the DeSoto Town Center Complex. Free parking is available in the nearby parking garage

Little Free Library at Armstrong Park

Beginning this February, Duncanville residents will be able to “take a book, return a book” free of charge. The local Kappa Gamma Delta chapter will be offering a “little library” or book kiosk at Armstrong Park near City Hall as part of the Little Free Libraries project.

The Duncanville High School will be providing the design and production of the library kiosk and the local Kappa Gamma Delta chapter will be in charge of maintaining it. To donate books, simply put them in the Little Free Library kiosk. For more information about this project visit www.littlefreelibrary.org or contact the Duncanville Parks and Recreation Department at 972-780-4972.

 

Staff reads

Our list of book reviewers is growing! We expect this bundle of books will bring you great joy. Normally, I receive each week’s list of books in my email. This week, however, it was delivered by a bird. It seemed to be a… stork.

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

 

What to Expect When You’re Expecting by Heidi Eisenberg Murkoff

A very useful book. I’m sure I’ll be reading it often over at least the next nine months. It’s been the go-to book for newly pregnant women for years. I’ve very excited to have a good reason to be reading this book.

~Mystery Staffer

 

My Struggle, Book 2: A Man In Love by Karl Ove Knausgaard

Second of six, I believe. Previously reviewed the first one here; the second one is notable for its painfully accurate descriptions of life as a parent.

~Hannah

Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates

It is having a big impact on me. Everyone I’ve seen talk about this says it’s a must-read, and they are right. Now to figure out how I need to behave in light of the reality he brings to the forefront.

~Hannah

Middle School: The Worst Years Of My Life (movie)

Rafe has an epic imagination… and a slight problem with authority. Both collide when he transfers to an oppressive, rule-crazy middle school. Drowning in do’s and don’ts, Rafe and his scheming best friend Leo hatch a plan to break every rule in the school’s Code of Conduct. The movie is based on the junior fiction novel by James Patterson and Chris Tebbetts.

~Danene

The Great Gilly Hopkins (movie)

Gilly Hopkins has seen more than her share of foster homes and has outwitted every family she has lived with. In an effort to escape her new foster mother Mamie Trotter’s endless loving care, Gilly concocts a plan that she believes will bring her real mother running to her rescue. The movie is based on the junior fiction novel by Katherine Paterson.

~Danene

Old Man’s War by John Scalzi

Long before John Scalzi wrote “The Martian”, {original book by Andy Weir} which turned out to be a pretty good movie, he wrote Old Man’s War. This book is a fantastic story of future earth where older retired people are made new again. The catch is they have to go to war with their new improved super bodies defending other planets hard won from other alien races. Another thing that is great about Scalzi’s writing is his sense of humor. It makes his books very entertaining to read. Look for this book on display near the front desk along with other books that start a series where you’ll make book friends not easily forgotten.

Happy Reading!

~Stunt Clerk #3

Need a laptop?

The library has a few brand new Chromebooks that are available to Duncanville residents. They can be used either inside the library or you can take them home for a week.

We’re very excited to be able to offer these, but we do have a few rules.

In order to take home a Chromebook, you must be a Duncanville resident with a library card in good standing. That means no fees or overdues for at least three months.

  • Take-home checkout is good for one week.
  • $2 per day late fee
  • No renewals

There is also the option of borrowing a Chromebook to use in the library. Any adult with a Duncanville library card in good standing (including Cedar Hill or Desoto residents) are eligible.

  • 2 hour checkout
  • One renewal of 2 hours
  • $1 per hour late fee

Ask at the Information Desk at 972-780-5052 for more details.

Staff Reads

Look away, look away. You don’t want to read these reviews. You probably wouldn’t like any of the suggestions. And even if by chance you did find one intriguing, you probably wouldn’t have time to read/watch it.

Look away, look away.

 

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

 

Grave Peril by Jim Butcher (book 3 in the Dresden Files series)

I have figured out why these books are hard for me to read; it’s “intense situations of peril” start to finish! It’s also kind of the point of the series. If you’re fond of fantastical type things and action, you will enjoy these. I plan to keep reading them, though in small doses, especially since these come highly recommended by people close to me.

~Hannah

 

Home Comforts: The Art and Science of Keeping House by Cheryl Mendelson.

This is one I come to occasionally, read, and then leave for a while, as it’s a very practical book. I enjoy reading her descriptions of housekeeping and her opinions about what should and shouldn’t be done, and the practical tips are helpful too.

~Hannah

The Man Who Knew Too Much (dvd)

The 1956 film in glorious color about an American couple (James Stewart and Doris Day) who travel to Morocco with their ten year old son, meet a mysterious Arab who on the surface appears friendly and also not, and who ends up dead, leading to an impromptu trip to England. The dying man whispers something to Stewart’s character which turns out to be too much information that everyone else wants but he can’t safely divulge. Cliff hanger to the end. Doris Day is radiant and sings her most famous signature song, “Que Sera, Sera” (Whatever Will Be Will Be).

~Ron

The Lost Years by Mary Higgins Clark

Mary Higgins Clark has a talent for making you wonder who did it all the way to the end with her mystery stories. Her formula continues to entertain in The Lost Years. I have to admit that my guess in the cast of characters was wrong with this story, but when I found out who the real murderer was, I had to do a mental head slap because of course that person was obviously the best candidate. The fun with her stories is that the obvious doesn’t become so until the end. This was a good story, not as good as some of her other stories, but very engaging anyway.

~Stunt Clerk #3

Birth Of A Nation The Birth of a Nation (DVD)

Was Nat Turner a hero or villain? His story is brutal and eye opening. The cast did an excellent job in acting out how miserable the yolk of slavery was. Turner rallied his people who longed for freedom, calling them to arms. It is a chilling how Turner and his band of followers killed 60 slave owners, but understandable when one thinks on the way he and his people were treated. It is a classic history lesson that when an oppressed people have had enough mistreatment they rise up to defend themselves at any cost. The commentary that comes with the movie was also very interesting and worth watching.

~Stunt Clerk #3

Image result for a series of unfortunate events netflix  A Series of Unfortunate Events (Netflix series)

There are eight episodes, which basically covers the first 4 books. The situations are ridiculously melancholy and completely unlikely. Which is kinda the point. I didn’t see the movie version but I did read the books and I think all the actors and crew did a great job.

~Buffy the Netflix Watcher

Staff reads

Looks like this week the library staff watched more than they read. That’s quite all right; we don’t judge. The library is known for having lots of books, but we have lots of other things too. Y’all should come in and check it out. (*librarian humor*)

 

The Secret Life of Pets (dvd)

A faithful companion gets jealous and ugly and inadvertently triggers a day filled with catastrophes. Max finds himself having to share his home and human with another dog named Duke. Duke decides to get back at Max and they both end up fighting for their lives and one disastrous event after another takes place. They also make many new frenemies along the way. At the end they find themselves back home with Katy a little wiser about sharing and accepting change. This is a great movie with a reminder to play nice with everyone.

~Stunt Clerk #3

My Neighbor Seki (manga) *coming soon to DVPL

I’ve only read the first volume, but it’s a silly and fun manga to read. This manga series is about Rumi Yokoi, who in the midst of her normal life as a student, finds herself sitting next to a very interesting “neighbor” in her classroom. The neighbor named Seki is interested in only one thing, building bizarrely elaborate dioramas on his desk. So elaborate in fact, that Yokoi can’t help become interested in what he’s up to. Thus the dilemma begins for young Yokoi, who wants to learn, but can’t help but be impressed at the wacky antics her neighbor Seki is up to. Yokoi becomes so interested in fact, that she manages to get in trouble more than once, while Seki somehow never does. The stories that Seki weaves with his imagination, and a lot of skill, will leave you wanting more.

~Deysi

Outlander (tv series)

Claire Randall is a WW2 nurse who somehow goes back in time to Scotland in 1743. She tries to adapt, survive, and return to her own time. There are many complications along the way: political, emotional, and physical.

Based on the popular Outlander series of books by Diana Gabaldon.

~Buffy the Netflix Watcher

The Wiz (Live)

Starring world-class performers and recording artists including Queen Latifah, Mary J. Blige, David Alan Grier, and Ne-Yo, this is NBC’s musical television production of The Wiz Live! Staying true to the groundbreaking Broadway show that put a vivid urban spin on the land of Oz, get ready for a fresh, eye-popping new trip down the yellow brick road. Winner of seven Tony Awards, including Best Musical, the original hit Broadway show became a cultural touchstone that also spawned the classic film starring Diana Ross and Michael Jackson. Here, a Tony-winning creative team has brought together the imaginative acrobats of Cirque du Soleil and a cast of extraordinary singers and dancers to create an exciting new version of The Wiz unlike anything seen before.

~Candace

Dune by Frank Herbert

I don’t always read fiction, but when I do…it’s usually something that’s been around for a while and most everyone else has already read! This time, it was a 50-year-old classic and winner of the Hugo and Nebula Awards that’s gone on to become one of the best-selling sci-fi works of all time.

One thing that stood out for me about Herbert’s storytelling is that so much of the development takes place in what the characters notice. There’s action in the plot for sure, but it’s both inside and outside the characters’ heads. The Dune universe’s superpower is an ultra-heightened ability to pick up on subtle details, to foresee various possible futures, and to influence others by getting deep inside their psyche…rather like The Force in the Star Wars universe, though the characters don’t have access to full-on telepathy or telekinesis. Mind control in the Dune universe happens in a way that, by comparison, somehow seems more plausible…even more organic than the techniques used in Inception (2010) and the nootropics of Alan Glynn’s The Dark Fields (which was the basis for the 2011 film Limitless).

But what most won me over about this novel—and this is usually where a work of fiction either wins me over or not—is that even though it’s a fictional story, I still walk away from it with some new insight or perspective on the real world and how people interact within it. (As Picasso puts it, “art is a lie that makes us realize truth.”) Fans of Dune who want to dig further into philosophical questions posed by Herbert’s universe may enjoy Dune and Philosophy, edited by Jeffery Nicholas.

-Dennis

Minimalism

This is a documentary that takes a look at how we might live a life with more purpose and less things (or just things that bring us joy). I stumble onto this while looking for inspiration on the internet after reading The life-changing magic of tidying up : the Japanese art of decluttering and organizing by Marie Kondo. The creatures of this film also have a podcast and website called: The Minimalist. I have found these materials to be a helpful in trying to declutter and to really focus on what important to me.

~ Emma

Product Details The Tomorrow People (TV Series)

This show is about people with special powers, and their struggles keep themselves alive. I like this series because it is thought provoking about the subject of if people so different then us (i.e. powers) to they deserve to be treated differently. If you are a fan if the CW shows you might like this series.

~Emma

Staff reads

There are some great fiction and non-fiction books this week. I compile the list every week and I’m going to add some of these titles to my personal TBR (to be read) list.

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

 

 Eddie the Eagle (movie)

Inspired by true events, this is a feel-good story about Michael Eddie Edwards, an unlikely but courageous British ski jumper who charmed the world at the 1988 Winter Olympics.

~Danene

 

Invincible (movie)

Based on the story of Vince Papale, a 30-year-old bartender from South Philadelphia who overcame long odds to play for the NFL’s Philadelphia Eagles in 1976.

~Danene

The Highly Sensitive Person by Elaine N. Aron.

This has come recommended by various people, particularly Ann Bogel of Modern Mrs. Darcy. It describes the 15-20% of the population who are more sensitive to external stimuli, take more in, and are more easily overwhelmed by certain environments. I’m pretty sure this is me, so I’m curious to find out what she has to say. (Currently on sale in Kindle form; I got it during a previous Kindle book sale.)

~Hannah

The Martian by Andy Weir

Astronaut Mark Watney makes history when he is left for dead on Mars. The history making part is that he doesn’t die. Instead, he puts his botany and mechanical skills to use and manages to survive; without going crazy.

I’ve actually read this book before. My anti-social side really, really enjoys the idea of being the only person on the planet. (I also recommend the movie.)

~Buffy the Netflix Watcher

HEARTLAND - THE COMPLETE SEASON 1 Heartland (tv series)

Follows a family who own a horse/cattle ranch in Alberta, Canada. The youngest daughter, Amy, has a gift for training and fixing “problem” horses.

My whole family has been watching this show. It’s very wholesome and family friendly without being sugary sweet.

~Buffy the Netflix Watcher

What You Should Know About Politics…But Don’t: A Nonpartisan Guide to the Issues that Matter by Jessamyn Conrad.

Reading this as part of my goal to be a better informed and more engaged citizen. It does appear to be bipartisan, and I am learning a lot I didn’t know about the various big issues. It’s a good starting point.

~Hannah

Ashfall by Mike Mullin

Everything changed when the Fire Nation attacked… or rather, when the Yellowstone supervolcano erupted. Alex’s parents were away when the disaster happened and so he sets out to find them. He struggles to survive the changed weather and the collapse of most of the nation’s infrastructure.

~Buffy the Netflix Watcher

Staff reads

Here’s our first set of recommendations for the brand new year. We’re starting off right with a good mixture of titles. Audiobooks, DVDs, print books, I’m sure you’ll find something that sounds interesting.

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

Kubo and the Two Strings (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital HD)

 

Kubo and the Two Strings (DVD)

Clever, kindhearted Kubo makes a humble living, telling stories to the people of his seaside town. Unsure if the stories his mother told him are real or made up, Kubo accidentally summons the evil spirits that have hunted him since his birth. Armed with his magical instrument, Kubo joins forces with Monkey and Beetle. Together they set out on a thrilling quest to save his family and solve the mystery of his fallen father, the greatest samurai warrior the world has ever known. With the help of his samisen – a magical musical instrument – Kubo must battle gods and monsters, including the vengeful Moon King and the evil twin Sisters to unlock the secret of his legacy, reunite his family, and fulfill his heroic destiny.

It’s a beautiful 3D stop-motion film that will warm your heart. I can’t say for sure, but I believe it took them 2 years to make this film. Not only is the art/animation incredible, but the music played by the samisen skillfully harmonizes with the story. It’s a must see for any lover of animated films, art, and the Japanese culture. If you’re interested in seeing some of the stop motion animation, click on the link and get ready to have your mind blown!

~Deysi

 

Zero Waste by Bea Johnson.

This book is about making the conscious decision to cut back on plastic (any type) waste. Came across this as I was doing more research on minimalism after reading Marie Kondo’s book. The thing you might find helpful in this book might not happen overnight, but will take time. I found this book to be insightful about wanting to be a good steward of this one and only earth that we are on. So if you are a “go green” kind of person (or wanting to be a more conscious citizen) you might like this book. You can also look on YouTube and Pinterest for more inspiration.

~Emma

Disney U : how the Disney University develops the world’s most engaged, loyal, and customer-centric employees by Doug Lipp.

The book goes over on how a company might do better customer service the “The Disney Way”. This book is a good read if you are in a job that deals with the public all the time. After reading this book is has inspired me to want to do a better job at customer service here at the library. Some great additional reads that would go along with this book are Creativity, Inc.: overcoming the unseen forces that stand in the way of true inspiration by Edwin E. Catmull and Be Our Guest by Theodore Kinni.

~Emma

  Life, Animated by Ron Suskind

We hear a lot about autism, but I’ve never read a book like this! It’s the inspiring true story of Owen Suskind, a boy with autism, who is totally absorbed by Disney movies. But instead of his fascination keeping him isolated from the outside world, the characters and emotions of the movies, which he knows so well, help Owen – and his family – connect his own inner thoughts and feelings to reality. As readers, we both cry and cheer to watch the very difficult but rewarding journey that Owen, his parents, and his older brother travel together as they learn to deal with his uniqueness. It is an astounding account, detailed so very well by his father, who is a Pulitzer Prize writer. I saw some video clips online of Owen’s story, and a documentary movie by the same title is now also available, so at first I thought the book would seem dry and boring in comparison. Not at all! I would recommend it to anyone who likes to be inspired by courage, commitment, and family.

~Carole

  The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot

Do you like science? Do you like biographies? How about investigative reporting? This book is for you! Rebecca Skloot does an amazing job of introducing us to the famous HeLa cells, used in nearly every research lab. But learning about the history of the cells pales in comparison to the mystery involved in tracking down and getting to know about the life and death of Henrietta Lacks, from whom those cells originated. And we are not only become acquainted with, but feel that we get to know her family members, who finally came to trust the writer with their very personal story. In places, I laughed out loud. And sometimes I unashamedly cried. The descriptions of what this poor, black family went through were so vividly drawn, I felt I could see the dusty road and the tumbled-down house.

Listening to the audiobook for me was an enrichment in fully experiencing this story. The different voices of the characters as well as the narration really brought everything to life.

I highly recommend you give this book and audiobook a try!

~Carole

The Longest Walk by George Meegan

George Meegan had a dream of crossing the entire western hemisphere on foot. In 1976, he set out to do just that, walking from Ushuaia, Argentina, to Prudhoe Bay, Alaska. The journey stretched to over 19,000 miles and took him seven years to complete. Along the way he got married, had two children, crossed the all-but-impassable Darien Gap, camped with gauchos, cheated death, met Jimmy Carter and Larry King, and experienced the Americas firsthand in a way that nobody had before and very few have done since. The Longest Walk is his account of the historic journey.

~Dennis