Public library cardholders have access to a region-wide subscription to the OverDrive downloadable book service.
eReaders can also be borrowed from the Library
The library has 3 eReaders available to check out! These readers were made available from a grant from the Zumbrota Community Trust. Available models are the Kindle, the Nook, and the Sony Reader. Checking out an eReader is similar to checking out a book. You can have the devices for 2 weeks at a time. However, the library will require a credit card deposit as a security measure.
An eBook is an electronic version of a traditional print book.
With your library card, you can check out current and popular fiction and nonfiction, including books for children and teens. These are available through OverDrive, which enables you to borrow eBooks with your library card just as you do other materials. (eAudiobooks are also available through OverDrive.)
Books that are available for library loan (or for purchase) can be downloaded right to your computer or handheld device. This allows you to carry an entire library with you, without having to haul around actual books. You can also use other features such as searching, magnifying text, and making notes (to name a few).
eBooks are read through eReaders, which can be either physical devices or applications on your portable device or computer.
Some popular stand-alone electronic readers (eReaders) are the Amazon Kindle, Sony Reader, and the Barnes & Noble NOOK. These eReaders have a special technology that makes eBooks easy to read, so it feels more like reading the printed word than reading text on a computer screen. Apple’s iPad also offers books through their iBooks store. You may also be able to download eBooks to your PC, your iPhone, your BlackBerry, or other electronic device, depending on where the content is coming from.
You can also download eReaders as applications to your existing computer or portable device, as an alternative to purchasing a stand-alone eReader. Two popular programs are the free Blio reader and the Calibre eBook management tool. Amazon has also released a free Kindle app for PC, Mac, iPad, Android, iPhone, and BlackBerry. OverDrive (the service libraries are using) has free apps available for the iPhone, iPod touch, and Android phone/tablet, and more. Google also has an eBookstore, offering eBooks that are compatible with many devices on the market, including the iPod.
SELCO regional library system has the OverDrive service providing current, popular eBooks that you can borrow with your library card just as you do other materials.
Some eBooks are also available through our statewide subscription to NetLibrary. These are mostly academic titles, and the subscription does not include the ability to download to a portable device.
If you download a free reader (such as Blio) you can find free eBooks through those apps. You will not find current bestsellers available for free this way; most of what you will find are items in the public domain (i.e., older items no longer covered by copyright). Some sites only make titles available to read via your browser, while other sites offer downloads.
Below are links to some of the more well-known and comprehensive sources of free eBooks.
http://books.google.com/books (Google Books)
http://books.google.com/ebooks (Google eBookstore: perform a search and limit to “Free Only”)
Wired Magazine has a series of buying guides, including one on Tablets & E-Book Readers.
CNET has done an excellent, thorough overview entitled “Kindle vs. Nook vs. iPad: Which e-book reader should you buy?”