Sorry for the bad pun – but the app, Overdrive is really cool and it was the only catchy title that came to mind. It is an app that works in conjunction with your library membership that allows you to check out ebooks and audiobooks – yes, you can read/listen to these books completely free, just like traditional books in the library.
This app allows you to search titles from all your approved libraries and download them directly to your device.
I use two copies of the app – one for the iPad and one for the iPhone.
As most of my audiobook listening takes place in the car and my iPhone automatically connects to my Civic, I use the phone for audiobooks. I download the ebooks to the iPad as that is where I do my “eyes on letters” reading.
It isn’t a license to download copies of titles and never return them, that is handled automatically by the app. You check out a title for 15 days and whether you are finished or not it returns.
To protect the authors, just like a physical book, the libraries have to purchase these versions of the books as well. When I have a title checked out, nobody else can read it. They are allowed to put a hold on the title and it will automatically be delivered after returned by previous reader.
My new library, the Kyle Public Library is a part of the Central Texas Digital Consortium. I don’t have a ton of info on this network, but it appears that they share their catalogs and allow each others members to check out their owned items. This means that more copies of popular titles are available.
If you like reading (and obviously you do because you have read this far) then join your library, download Overdrive and put your reading into overdrive. (Sorry couldn’t resist.)
by Chris Doelle
Also published on Medium.