You always wanted read Is infinite, and now you finally have enough free time to go through the 1,079 pages. Of course you can catch it from a local bookseller, or order it on Amazon.
But you may be able to read a digital copy for free by borrowing it from your local library. With a library card, internet connection and an e-reader, you can start reading the book right away without ever leaving your house.
Obtain a patent
First of all, you will need a library card. If you don’t already have one, visit your local branch to get one. This can be difficult if your library is always closed. But check your local branch’s website to see if you can get an e-card issued online. Some libraries will give you a card without you showing up.
Browse the shelves
Use your credentials to access your library’s eBook collection. Many libraries use Overdrive, a multiplatform service with millions of eBooks and audiobooks. Scroll through the OverDrive catalog in your browser or download the company’s app, called Libby, to scroll through the selection on your phone. Once you’ve found the book you want, you should be able to click a button and check it out.
Most books are available immediately. Some books, especially new releases or popular titles, will show a wait time. You might even have to wait a few weeks or months to borrow a bestseller. This is because libraries do not have unlimited copies of digital books; they have only a limited quantity to circulate, and the more popular a book becomes, the rarer these digital copies become.
So relax and grab a seat in the queue. Once you’ve applied for a loan, Libby will send an alert once the book is available to you. The app can also tell you the current wait time when copies are sent back to the library and the queue is getting shorter.
There are several ways to read your borrowed book. If you have a Kobo eReader, it integrates directly with OverDrive – just find a book on OverDrive on your Kobo and download it. You can also download books directly in the Libby app, or on any Light up device. We find a dedicated e-reader to be a more enjoyable experience and much less distracting.
A Kobo reader might be a little easier, but setting up a Kindle isn’t difficult. In the Libby app, tap the user menu at the top of the screen. Under Help and Support, locate the “Read books with” menu item, and then select Kindle. The app will walk you through the process of linking your Libby account with your Amazon account.
After setup is complete, every time you check out a book, the Libby app will take you to Amazon for a moment so you can tell Amazon which Kindle reader you want the book delivered to. After that, with your Kindle connected to Wi-Fi, simply turn on the device and go to the main menu. You should see the book appear automatically.
Give it back
Just like the rest of the books in the library, there is a limited shelf life for eBooks you view through OverDrive. These limits vary from library to library. Unlike physical books, you don’t have to do anything to return an eBook that you have borrowed. When your time is up, the book will simply disappear from your eReader.
No Kindle? No problem
If you don’t have a Kindle, that’s fine. You can still read eBooks right in the Libby app. Or, if you have another type of eReader, a Nook, a Kobo reader, a ReMarkable tablet, or any device who supports read digital books—You can transfer your book directly to the device from the Libby app or the OverDrive website.
However, just be aware that direct transfer support isn’t as comprehensive on a device that isn’t a dedicated eReader. You may need to download your eBook (in standardized ePub file format) to a computer and then manually transfer it to the eReader via USB.
Beyond the books
In addition to eBooks, most libraries also allow you to view audiobooks. You can stream them directly through the Libby app, and sometimes you’re allowed to download them as well.
Libraries with movies and TV shows in their collections (which are now most of them) also offer digital loans of these. That’s right, free movies! The best place to start is Canopy. You can use your library card to access the platform’s selection of streaming movies. Kanopy’s catalog is full of documentaries, indie films, and educational programming, but it also has some fun and insane elements.
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