Downton Abbey @ your library

Set in an Edwardian country house in 1912, Downton Abbey portrays the lives of the Crawley family and the servants who work for them. In the drawing rooms, library, and beautiful bedrooms, with their tall windows looking across the park, lives the family, but below stairs are other residents, the servants, as fiercely possessive of their ranks as anyone above.

Downton Abbey on DVD


Season 1  Volume 1

Season 2  Volume 1

Season 3  Volume 1

Volume 2

Volume 2

Volume 2

Volume 3

Volume 3

Volume 3

Downton Abbey Read-alikes

The Dressmaker by Kate Alcott. A spirited young maid on board the Titanic captures the attentions of two men including a kindhearted sailor and an enigmatic Chicago millionaire and barely escapes with her life before witnessing media scorn targeting her famous designer mistress. Check it out

Longbourn by Jo Baker. The servants in the Bennet household live their lives in Regency England during the Napoleonic Wars. A retelling of Jane Austen's Pride and prejudice from the servants' perspective. Check it out

Speaking from Among the Bones: A Flavia de Luce Novel by Alan Bradley. When the tomb of Saint Tancred, the patron saint of Bishop's Lacey, is opened on the five-hundredth anniversary of his death and the body of the missing church organist, Mr. Collicutt, is discovered inside, eleven-year-old amateur detective Flavia de Luce launches her own investigation into his death. Check it out

Lady Almina and the Real Downton Abbey: The Lost Legacy of Highclere Castle by The Countess of Carnarvon. Examines the life of Lady Almina, the fifth Countess of Carnarvon, and the events in Highclere Castle during the First World War. Check it out

Lady Catherine, the Earl, and the Real Downton Abbey by The Countess of Carnarvon. This companion piece to Lady Almina and the Real Downton Abbey, tells the story of Catherine Wendell, the beautiful and spirited American who married Lady Almina's son, the man who would become the 6th Earl of Carnarvon. Check it out

The Golden Prince by Rebecca Dean. In 1912 England, seventeen-year-old Prince Edward falls in love with the beautiful Lily Houghton who is not of royal blood, and as the two young lovers prepare to wed, the prince's royal destiny hangs in the balance. Check it out

Birdsong by Sebastian Faulks. After loving and losing a French woman from Amiens, Stephen Wraysford serves in the French army during World War I. Check it out

Parade's End by Ford Madox Ford. Presents four novels which tell the terrifying story of a good man tortured, pursued, driven into revolt, and ruined as far as the world is concerned by the clever devices of a jealous and lying wife. Christopher Tietjens is the last of a breed, the Tory gentleman, which the Great War, and the qualities inherent in his nature define and unravel. Check it out

Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro. Stevens, an elderly butler, hopes to rise to the top of his profession, and he remains stoic and unemotional at his father's death and neglects the opportunity to pursue a relationship with a former housekeeper. Check it out

Death Comes to Pemberley by P.D. James. Based on the characters of Pride and Prejudice, written by Jane Austen. Six years after her marriage, Elizabeth Darcy is happily living with her husband and two sons at Pemberley, when, after the end of their annual autumn ball, an uninvited guest arrives screaming that her husband has been murdered, thereby shattering Elizabeth's peaceful life. Check it out

Mr. Churchill's Secretary: A Novel by Susan Ella MacNeal. After German Luftwaffe bomb London, Maggie Hope, trained in math and code breaking, but only able to find a job as Winston Churchill's secretary, uses her position to try to unravel an assassinate plot. Check it out 

Park Lane by Frances Osborne. When Grace Carlisle arrives in London, she takes a job as a housemaid where she becomes caught up in the lives of its inhabitants, in particular, those of privileged son, Edward, and daughter, Beatrice. Check it out

The Cater Street Hangman: The First Charlotte and Thomas Pitt Novel by Anne Perry. Careless of both murder and manners, two determinedly unconventional young sisters ignore Victorian mores and actively join the police investigation into the murder of their servant girl. Check it out

The Heir Apparent: A Life of Edward VII, the Playboy Prince by Jane Ridley. A profile of the early-20th-century British king discusses how he disappointed his mother, Queen Victoria, with his notorious gambling, gluttony, and womanizing before his nine-year reign, during which he became an effective leader and diplomat. Check it out

Elizabeth the Queen: The Life of a Modern Monarch by Sally Bedell Smith. A tribute to the life and enduring reign of Elizabeth II draws on numerous interviews and previously undisclosed documents to juxtapose the queen's public and private lives. Check it out

Library staff can help you find read-alikes on any topic. Do-it-yourselfers are invited to explore NOVELIST PLUS, a handy resource for finding your next great read. Ask about it at any Library agency or try it from home with your full-service Sioux City Public Library card.

eBook how-tos @ your library

Did you receive an eBook reader over the holidays? With a full-service Library card, you can access thousands of bestselling titles from the Sioux City Public Library for free!  The Wilbur Aalfs (Main) Library offers one-on-one consultations on how to download eBooks (call 255-2933 x 221 to schedule an appointment) or bring your devices and questions to any Library Tech Talk—the next one is Tuesday, January 28 from 6 to 7:30 pm at the downtown library, 529 Pierce Street.

2013 Guide Book to Gift Books

For holidays, birthdays, and all your other gift-giving occasions...

Books make great gifts, but picking the perfect titles for your favorite youngsters can be daunting. The expert staff of the Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books have created an up-to-date, easy-to-use guide to help you navigate the bookstore wilderness of shiny new children's books.

The 2013 Guide Book to Gift Books is now available! This free edition includes brief annotations for over 300 of the best books for giving (and receiving). Entries (divided by age group) including author, title, publisher, and the current list price. The cnvenient downloadable PDF format lets you to print and use the guide right away. You can also use it on your smartphone. All titles are verified as currently in print.

Holiday Hours - 2013

The Online Branch is open 24/7 for your learning and leisure needs. All Library buildings will be closed Christmas Eve and Christmas Day (December 24-25). The Library closes at 5 p.m. on New Year's Eve and reopens Thursday, January 2.

Longtime librarian retires

Librarian David Mook retires this month after 43 years of service at the Sioux City Public Library. He shared these memories:

• When all the branches closed down in the month of August, for staff vacations.
• Venturing into the "Pit" for government documents at the old Main Library.
• Chasing bats at the old Main Library.
• Having the glass floors replaced with plywood and carpet, after one of the glass panels broke, almost sending a patron one level down.
• Having fireplaces in the libraries (even if we did not use them).
• Being able to open windows.
• Migrating from the Library card catalog, to a catalog on microfiche, to the electronic catalog, to web-based databases.
• Instructing patrons in the mysterious ways of the Reader's Guide to Periodical Literature.
• Fielding national and international calls during the Flight 232 crash!  "Does Sioux City have a hospital?".
• Telling children's stories on local TV - in costume.
• Answering literally thousands of local history and genealogy questions for patrons both from across the U.S. and internationally.
• Working in every branch library in the system since 1970.

Happy retirement, Dave! You will be missed!


Family Storytime

Open Book Club

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529 Pierce St.
4005 Morningside Ave.
2912 Hamilton Blvd.
Sioux City Iowa 51101
Sioux City Iowa 51106
(Lower B, Plaza Professional Center)
Sioux City Iowa 51104
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Monday-Thursday 10am-6pm
Thursday-Saturday 9am-5pm
Friday-Saturday 10am-5pm
Monday-Friday 10:30am-5:30pm
Sunday (Sept-May) 1pm-5pm