You can find the Duncan Hines restaurant guides on abebooks.com. If I want a used book, that's where I go. Look up Duncan Hines' restaurant guide "Adventures in Good Eating." They are a bit pricey, though.
Hines published an annual restaurant guide, but sometimes he published a particular title several times in one year (he was his own publisher). He constantly kept them up to date, sometimes publishing them in batches as little as 300 to 500 at a time.
The books from 1936 to 1954 were written by Hines. Hines then retired. The books written from 1955 to 1961 were written by his business partner's staff but with Hines' approval. (Or most of them; Hines died in 1959.)
The later books do not have the Hines touch. They are very brief and do not have the Hines personality behind their descriptions; this is, however, not necessarily the fault of the staff who compiled them.
Unlike the situation in 1936 when the books were first produced, by 1955 America had thousands of good restaurants to choose from; trying to put them all into a single book became a daunting task, and by 1962 an impossible one. This is why the decision was made to halt production of the books.
But if you want to read Hines' descriptions of restaurants that are no longer around--and quite a few that still are--his guidebooks are a good place to start.
I find it interesting what restaurants served then. And, in case you're wondering what Hines' "Adventures in Good Cooking" was all about, it was a book of recipes from these same restaurants that he recommended that people could produce in their own homes.
<message edited by Louis on Fri, 03/22/13 7:27 PM>