The More You Know: Free E-books Available at HumCo Library


Did you know you can check out e-books from library? The service has been in place since last year, and Victor Zazueta, the library director, is now confident enough in the program that he wants everyone to know about it. The Humboldt County Library provides free e-books and digital audiobooks for checkout and download anytime, anywhere. The service is offered through OverDrive, an international company that hosts e-books, audiobooks, music and video for libraries, schools, booksellers and publishers all over the world.

To check out an e-book, visit the library website and click on “eBooks.” The books are still only available to library cardholders; a valid Humboldt County Library card number is needed to check out books. OverDrive makes the books available across a variety of devices including Apple and Android smartphones and tablets, computers running Mac, Windows and Linux and e-readers such as the Kindle Fire.

Zazueta said that people with a Humboldt County Library card get access to more copies of popular titles than cardholders from other libraries because the county pays a bit extra for the OverDrive membership, which it splits with other Northern California libraries.
“It’s a good investment for us,” Zazueta said. “It gives us access to really current material.”

That material includes popular titles such as George R.R. Martin’s Game of Thrones series and recent titles such as the latest book in James Patterson's Alex Cross series, released in February.

Another advantage of checking out e-books is that there are no late fees. “They return themselves,” Zazueta said. The files should erase themselves from devices after the due date.

So far the service has been a success; the circulation of e-books has almost doubled so far this year compared to last year. “The trend will be toward a digital library in the future,” Zazueta said.

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