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Topic: Everything you need to know about borrowing ebooks from the library

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Subject: Everything you need to know about borrowing ebooks from the library
Date Posted: 9/21/2011 10:27 PM ET
Member Since: 10/30/2006
Posts: 8,426
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It's a little presumptuous of me to sound like I know everything there is to know about checking out ebooks from the library, but I'm fortunate enough to have access to 4 digital libraries (all legit) and have checked out over 100 books this year. So here goes:

1) Go to Overdrive.com and search for a library . Now what you're going to find is that your local public library may be listed here and have books ready for you right now. If so, yay for you, you're good to go. Now, what if your local library hasn't jumped on the ebook bandwagon yet or their selection is really crappy? The next thing you want to do is search the rest of your state. What we've found is that quite often, libraries within your state will give an out of area digital library card for free to other state residents (for example, Carlene found some in Texas that are reciprocal). Some may try to charge you. If anyone wants anything in the neighborhood of $25 or more, then hold up, we've got a better library for you.

2) If your selection sucks or they want too much money for that out of area library card, welcome to the Free Library of Philadelphia, the best $35 you will spend this year. The Free Library of Philadelphia truly is free if you live in Philly or meet some Pennsylvania qualifications. For the rest of us, the nice librarians in Philly are happy to sell us a digital library card for $35 a year and for that price, you can check out as many ebooks, audiobooks, movies, and other digital media that your heart desires. Their collection currently numbers over 12,000. There's a lot to choose from. There's a link in the top right corner that will get you to the sign up for a library card page and tell you where to mail your check.

3) Very important- before you do anything else, you need to download Adobe Digital Editions and MAKE SURE YOU USE THE SAME EMAIL ADDRESS FOR ADOBE, AMAZON/B&N, AND THE LIBRARY. Very, very important, becasue it all connects off the email addy. (Note: since I have a Nook, ya'll Kindle folks may not need the Adobe as I believe you can download right to the Kindle, so ya'll might be able to skip this step)

4) go check out some books and enjoy!

5) What's that, you say? The books you want have a waitlist- kind of like PBS? LOL! Sign yourself up for the waitlist, but be forewarned that you could get the "come check out your book" email at any moment and you have 3 days to get there, and then 21 days to read it. I have found my sanity stays intact if I only get in line for one waitlist at a time and in the meantime find something else to check out.

Have fun and welcome to the future of reading!

Date Posted: 9/22/2011 9:39 AM ET
Member Since: 6/23/2007
Posts: 225
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AHHH this was actually helpful!

I would not have thought of #3, about using the same email add.

Our library does have some ebooks but yeah not a great selection.

So i have yet to actually download a library book.

I should try it sometime, just to see if I can do it.

 

Thanks for the help!!!!!

Date Posted: 9/22/2011 11:59 PM ET
Member Since: 1/12/2011
Posts: 2,958
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Thank you! I just got my nook today. I sent in my check to Philadelphia a couple days ago. I'm not sure I understand #3? Is the Adobe program something I need on my computer to send the file to my nook?
Subject: Thanks Nancy
Date Posted: 9/23/2011 9:38 AM ET
Member Since: 4/1/2006
Posts: 27
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The information you posted makes it so easy for us that aren't as savy about these new gadgets. Karen

Date Posted: 9/23/2011 9:54 AM ET
Member Since: 10/30/2006
Posts: 8,426
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Yes. The Adobe program (for dowloads to the Nook and the Sony, not sure about the Kindle) is how the books make their way from the library website to your ereader. When you go into download your first library checkout, somewhere in the process it will download Adobe reader. Just make sure you register it with the same email address that you did for the Nook and the library. It will all self-install and make sense then. :)

Date Posted: 9/23/2011 10:01 AM ET
Member Since: 3/8/2009
Posts: 6,035
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I think Step #3 is not required for Kindle.   I know we don't need Adobe Digital Editions.  And I don't think I even have an email address attached to my library card, so that doesn't have to match with the email address on your amazon account.

Date Posted: 9/23/2011 10:01 PM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2009
Posts: 6,852
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Thanks Nancy.  Sigh, I have to wait and call my library tomorrow.  I need to get a access code from them along with my library card. I am glad I can download on the Kindle.  I have a sony too, but I enjoy reading on the Kindle more. 

Date Posted: 9/24/2011 12:07 AM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,384
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Some libraries use either your last name or the last digits of your phone number as the "default" PIN. 

Date Posted: 9/24/2011 1:43 PM ET
Member Since: 3/8/2009
Posts: 6,035
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Our's uses the last four digits of your library card number as your PIN

Date Posted: 9/24/2011 11:41 PM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2009
Posts: 6,852
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The library had a code and you have to enter it in front your library card number.   They check to make sure you do not owe any late fees before giving out the code :) 

The code was not my phone number, name etc.  I think it is the same for everyone in the library.  I just borrowed my first eBooks to find my Kindle ran out of juice - so now I have to wait, but as soon as my device connects to WiFi, I have my book!

ETA:  My library purchased a bunch of eBook to reduce the lending time, but  the selection over all is sad.   I think the Philadelphia Library may be a investment.    Nancy, thanks again, you made the process very easy and seamless. 



Last Edited on: 9/24/11 11:44 PM ET - Total times edited: 3
Date Posted: 9/26/2011 10:46 PM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2009
Posts: 6,852
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Question, can I check the book back in sooner than the 2 weeks?  The book was stupid and I want to check out another book, but there is a 3 book limit and I have two other books!

Can this be done or do I have to wait.  It is through my library -overdrive.  Thanks in advance. 

Date Posted: 9/26/2011 11:26 PM ET
Member Since: 1/22/2007
Posts: 1,101
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Robin- you can check the book back in early.

Date Posted: 9/26/2011 11:38 PM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2009
Posts: 6,852
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How would I return the book early?    By removing it from my device, would that return the book?  thanks

Date Posted: 9/27/2011 12:06 AM ET
Member Since: 1/22/2007
Posts: 1,101
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Go to amazon.com, click manage my kindle, find the book on the list of books listed there. One of the options is return to librabry or something like that.   Then remove it from your device.

Date Posted: 9/27/2011 1:46 AM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,384
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Go to "Your Digital Items".  Then "Manage Your Kindle".  Returning a book is on the tiny pull down menu across from the book title. 

Date Posted: 9/27/2011 8:45 AM ET
Member Since: 9/19/2006
Posts: 3,814
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Great info.  Something like this should be made into a sticky because it will come up as soon as this post goes to page 3 or 4!

Date Posted: 9/27/2011 8:52 AM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2009
Posts: 6,852
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Thanks!

Date Posted: 9/27/2011 8:52 AM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2009
Posts: 6,852
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Thanks!