Readers' Favorite

June 25, 2015

The Digital Library is an Avid Readers Best Friend

by Donna Huber

From time to time you may have heard me mention that I got a book from my digital library and I wanted to make sure everyone knew what I was talking about and check out this resource if your library subscribes to.

The Digital Library that my public library subscribes to is ran by OverDrive (I think there is another option out there, but I think OverDrive is the more popular one). It is a great resource for the avid reader like me who doesn't always have time to make it by the brick and mortar library. Also if you prefer to audio books or ebooks, then a Digital Library is the go to place.

The selection offered at your Digital Library is dependent on what your library has chosen. For example, I have access to ebooks and audio books, but my parents who are in a different regional library system only has ebooks in their Digital Library. There are even a few videos offered through my Digital Library.

To access the Digital Library, I just select my regional library system then use my library card and pin numbers to log in. And now I have thousands of ebooks and audio books at my finger tips any time of the day or night.

There are some limitations, just like there are at the regular library. There are limited quantities of each particular title so if someone has already checked out the title then you have to put a hold on it. I love though, that I can see what number I am in the line. Also there is a wishlist option so if you see a title that you are interested in, but you don't want to check it out right now then you add it to your wishlist so you will remember it next time.

I mostly listen to audio books as I have way too many review ebooks to read and it is the reason I got hooked on the digital library. I LOVE digital audio books, but I'm too cheap for an Audible subscription (I'm also a feast or famine audio book listener - I'll go through 5 or 6 titles and then not listen to one for months). It used to be that you could get ebooks in WMA or MP3 files from the digital library. That kind of sucked because there were way more WMA books than MP3 and I wanted MP3 so I could download them to my phone.

Now I'm in an office all by myself. The laptop provided from my job does not have a CD (or DVD) player in it nor can I download the OverDrive app to the laptop. I was feeling pretty bummed because my cell phone was getting really old and the battery would overheat from the continuous play. Well, guess what? They now offer Listen in Browser. WooHoo! (I noticed that the WMA format has disappeared too).

I love digital audio books over CDs because it is so much easier to find your place when you get distracted and have to go back. I hated when I would be listening in the car and be in the middle of the CD when I got home. It was difficult to find my place when I started it up again in the house. Or how about ending a CD in the car and then fumbling around (while driving!) trying to get the next CD?

OverDrive has also teamed up with Amazon to provide expanded ebook options to Kindle users. So you get even more ebooks than your library is subscribed to. There's a book club and there are "unlimited" editions available for checkout for the featured book. My only real complaint is that the search function isn't very good, nor are books categorized very well so it can be difficult looking for a book.

And all the books aren't just for adults. My Digital Library has a TON of ebooks and audio books for young readers. So if you can't read "just one more" book with your preschooler, then check out a digital audio book for him or her. I listened to a bunch of YA books

Seriously, if you are an avid reader who also wants to trim their book buying budget, then going to the Digital Library is for you. Call your library today (or go to their website) to find out if you have access to a Digital Library and if not, tell your librarians how much you would love to have one.

If you live in Georgia, here is the link to the Georgia Download Destination (ie "Digital Library):

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  1. yes, my own digital library services are awesome. we have actually 3: overdrive, but also 3M and Hoopla, then many ore publishers are covered - some work with Overdrive, some with 3M.
    and that's also tons of audiobooks to download form home.
    Not mentioning e-magazines, e-music, and e-movies. What would become without my library?