Saturday, February 18, 2012

How to get library books for your Kindle

Squidoo Lens

Last year I received a Kindle for my Bday, yea me.  Since I do not have tons of money but read on average 100 books a year I get most from the library.  So as my friends get kindles or other ereaders I would mention I use the library.  They then ask "Well how do you do that".   So I wrote up a little tutorial and posted it to Squidoo

The first thing you need to do is go to your local library and get a library card.  You will normally need to prove residence so take your drivers license or a bill to show you live in the city or county.  Once you have your card you will need to set up an online account.  So while getting the card make sure you ask what are the steps you need to take.  Some libraries simply use your card number while others will have an online password.

Once you log onto your library system one of the option will be “download ebooks” or emedia.    You will see a searchable system where you can query for author (sometimes called creator), title, publication date, or date added to site.  The selections online may be more limited than the physical version.  Once you find a book you like you need to note certain items.  First check to make sure a kindle edition is available.  Sometimes they only have one kind.  Next note the “available copies”.  Like with physical books the library has only so many editions available so you may be put on the waiting list.  You can modify your query to look for books that are available if you are impatient for something to read.  In the available sections the library may note how many patrons are waiting so you can decide if you want to wait.  It will also tell you how many copies the library has.

To check out your book you can either “reserve a title” or “add to cart”.  These are commonly worded options.  If you reserve a title you will be asked to enter your email or your account will have one stored.  When the title is available you will have a limited time to go and check out your book, for my library this is two days then it goes back into circulation for the next person.  If the title is available you add to cart.  Many libraries have a time limit so you can’t add a book to your cart and come back three days later to check out; the time limit may be 30 minutes to an hour.  At checkout you should have the option of how long you want to keep the book.  Typically the choice is 7, 14, and 21 days.  After that time it will expire and no longer be available on your kindle.

Once you click on “get for kindle” (you may have to do this individually for each book) it will take you to the Amazon website to download the book.  Simply click on the “Get Library Book” and next time your kindle is linked to a wi-fi it will download the book.  I have had this happen instantaneously or take a couple of hours, still haven’t figured out why.  You now have the book on your kindle and can read to your heart’s content.   When the book is about to expire you will get a notification from your library.  Once the book has expired it will automatically be removed from your device and you will get a kindle notification.  If you finish reading it early you can go to Amazon, Manage Your Kindle, and one of the options is to “return library book”.  So you can be nice if there is a long list of people waiting on that book and make it available for them.  Also in the “manage your kindle” section of Amazon you can delete the book from your list of books if you just don’t feel like seeing it in there.

You have now successfully downloaded your novel so sit back relax and enjoy the free read.

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