location

Durham Public Library
7 Maple Avenue
Durham, CT 06422
860-349-9544

Hours:
10:00am - 9:00pm * Monday through Thursday
10:00am - 5:00pm * Friday and Saturday

blog description

"You see, I don't believe that libraries should be drab places where people sit in silence, and that's been the main reason for our policy of employing wild animals as librarians."--Monty Python


Thursday, April 24, 2014

STAFF PICKS--GONE GIRL

Diana's pick is Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn.

About the book: 

On a warm summer morning in North Carthage, Missouri, it is Nick and Amy Dunne's fifth wedding anniversary.  Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick's clever and beautiful wife disappears.  Husband-of-the-year Nick isn't doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams about the slope and shape of his wife's head, but passages from Amy's diary reveal the alpha-girl perfectionist could have put anyone dangerously on edge.  Under mounting pressure from the police and the media--as well as Amy's fiercely doting parents--the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior.  Nick is oddly evasive, and he's definitely bitter--but is he really a killer?

Diana says:  What a roller coaster ride this book was!  You really didn't know which of the main characters to like or dislike.  This is one of those books you can't put down.  Great read.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

PATRON PICKS -- Ru: A Novel and The City of Falling Angels

Kassie's Picks:


Ru: A Novel, by Kim Thuy

About the book:  Vietnamese author Kim Thuy's novel unfolds in the way a flower casts off petals:  one small scene after another.  Ru is an autobiographical novel in which memories are shuffled back and forth to tell the story of a 10-year-old born in Saigon during the 1968 Tet Offensive. (NPR Books)

Kassie says:  Perfect short vignettes allow engagement with terror, grief, loss of country, as well as extraordinary joy and love.  Beautiful.




The City Of Falling Angels,
by John Berendt 
(Kassie listened to the audio book.)

About the book:  Turning to the magic, mystery, and decadence of Venice, John Berendt gradually reveals the truth behind a sensational fire that in 1996 destroyed the historic La Fenice opera house.  Encountering a rich cast of characters, Berendt tells a tale full of atmosphere and surprise as the stories build, one after the other, ultimately coming together to portray a world as finely drawn as a still-life painting. (Goodreads)

Kassie says:  Non-fiction narrative about Venice, city of dreams, with its Bridge of Sighs.  Centers on the fire which destroyed the last opera theater, La Fenice--arson, mafia, negligence??--with wonderful portraits of native Venetians and ex-pats like Ezra Pound.


Friday, August 16, 2013

An Evening with Stephen King at The Bushnell

One of our staff members, Diana, recently had the excitement of seeing Stephen King for an author talk at The Bushnell in Hartford!

"He was so down to earth, he was funny, and of course a great story teller!  He told us one story about when he knew he made it big.  He was in a small restaurant, I forget where--NY maybe, having dinner with Bruce Springsteen.  A family came in and sat near them, celebrating something.  Their daughter, who was probably 15/16, kept sneaking glances at Stephen King and Bruce Springsteen.  Eventually she got up, and walked their way.  Bruce Springsteen started to reach into his pocket for his pen.  The girl never even looked his way.  She went right to Stephen King and politely asked for his autograph, totally ignoring Bruce Springsteen!  Just one of the many great stories he told that night."  --Diana

Stephen King's newest book is Joyland.  

Set in a small-town North Carolina amusement park in 1973, Joyland tells the story of the summer in which college student Devin Jones comes to work as a carny and confronts the legacy of a vicious murder, the fate of a dying child, and the ways both will change his life forever.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Oops, I read that already! (Setting up a Reading History)

Have you ever brought home a stack of books from the library only to find you've already read 2 or 3 of them?  If you set up a reading history on your library account, you'll be able to keep track of which books you've read.  It's easy...

Go to www.durhamlibrary.org

Click on My Account

Fill your last name and patron ID number (library card barcode, no spaces)

Click on Submit

Click on My Reading History

Click on Opt In

And you're finished!  Any items checked out on your account from the time you opt in will be recorded until you delete them or choose to opt out.

Friday, June 7, 2013

PATRON PICKS --THE HOUSE OF SPECIAL PURPOSE

Noel's pick is The House of Special Purpose, by John Boyne.

About the book:
Part love story, part historical epic, part tragedy, The House of Special Purpose illuminates an empire at the end of its reign.  Eighty-year-old Georgy Jachmenev is haunted by his past--a past of death, suffering, and scandal that will stay with him until the end of his days.  Living in England with his beloved wife, Zoya, Georgy prepares to make one final journey back to the Russia he once knew and loved, the Russia that both destroyed and defined him.  As Georgy remembers days gone by, we are transported to St. Petersburg, to the Winter Palace of the czar, in the early twentieth century--a time of change, threat, and bloody revolution. As Georgy overturns the most painful stone of all, we uncover the story of the house of special purpose.  (from Goodreads)

Noel says:  Flashbacks between an impoverished boy's coming of age in the Tsar's Winter Palace and his life/marriage in 1980's London.

PATRON PICKS -- ORDINARY GRACE

Noel's pick is Ordinary Grace, by William Kent Krueger.

About the book:
New Bremen, Minnesota, 1961.  The Twins were playing their debut season, ice-cold root beers were at the ready at Halderson's Drug Store soda counter, and Hot Stuff comic books were a mainstay on every barbershop magazine rack.  It was a time of innocence and hope for a country with a new, young president.  But for thirteen-year-old Frank Drum it was a summer in which death assumed many forms.

When tragedy unexpectedly comes to call on his family, which includes his Methodist minister father, his passionate, artistic mother, Juilliard-bound older sister, and wise-beyond-his-years kid brother, Frank finds himself thrust into an adult world full of secrets, lies, adultery, and betrayal.  (from Goodreads)

Noel says:  Wonderful characters, excellent writing--twists & surprise ending.  Set in Minnesota, small town 1960's.


Saturday, May 18, 2013

PATRON PICKS -- MY KNEES WERE JUMPING (DVD)

Kassie's pick is My Knees Were Jumping:  Remembering the Kindertransport (DVD).  Directed by Melissa Hacker, narrated by Joanne Woodward.


About the movie:
During WWII, between 1938 and 1939, Allied forces launched a courageous rescue mission to save 10,000 children from certain death in the concentration camps.  These children were of Jewish or Gypsy descent or were otherwise marked as undesirable.  This documentary looks at what happened to these salvaged children.  To tell their often sad stories and chronicle the psychological effects of the traumatic events (although it was planned that the children would eventually be returned to their parents, over 90% never saw their parents again) the film uses interviews with survivors and rescuers, archival footage, and old photographs.  Though filmmaker Melissa Hacker keeps the focus on others, her own mother was one of the children saved from the camps.  (New York Times)

Kassie says:  A beautiful then and now, balancing the heroics of rescuing the children with the fact that less than 10% of parents survived.  Interviews with child survivors at a reunion.