S.P. Library Offers Access to Audiobooks, eBooks
How can avid readers save money, time, and the earth in one fell swoop?
Get a card from Southern Pines Public Library and enjoy access to free digital audiobooks and eBooks.
Imagine yourself listening to a free audiobook while exercising or commuting, secure in the knowledge that no trees were sacrificed for your enjoyment. Not to mention that you didn't use any gas getting to the library, since the downloading may be done from home at any time of the day or night.
Still not sold? Because titles automatically expire and are returned to the collection at the end of the seven-day lending period, there are never any late fees.
In order to make all this possible, Southern Pines Public Library recently expanded its digital media services by joining the North Carolina Digital Library (NCDL).
NCDL is a consortium of 20 North Carolina public libraries that have pooled their resources in order to bring OverDrive, the leading global distributor of digital audiobooks and eBooks, to their library cardholders.
Each library system purchases titles individually, but all customers have access to the entire collection. Currently, the North Carolina Digital Library offers over 2,000 audiobooks and 130 eBooks, and the collection continues to grow.
Digital audiobooks, which are spoken-word digital audio files, can be enjoyed on a PC as well as on hundreds of portable audio devices. While not every audiobook is compatible with every device, the list is growing.
For example, there are now a number of audiobook titles available in a format for the popular Ipod device. The digital audiobooks may also be burned to CD for listening in a car or in any standard CD player. An eBook is a text-based, digital version of a book that can be read on a home computer, Macintosh, Smartphone, Palm OS device, or PocketPC.
"We are very excited to offer many of the same best-selling authors that are in our physical collection in digital format, including James Patterson, Patricia Cornwell, and even the Twilight series," says Library Director Lynn Thompson.
To check out, customers will need a valid Southern Pines Public library card, a self-selected PIN number, a personal computer, and Internet connection.
They will need to install free software, like the OverDrive Media Console for audio, music, and video titles, for use on a Windows operating system or Mac.
To read eBook titles, users will download the reader software for Adobe and Mobipocket eBooks. After installing the free OverDrive software on their computers, cardholders may then browse through the more than 2,000 audiobooks: bestselling novels, children's books, biographies, health guides and even foreign language tutorials.
There are also videos (such as classic horror film "Night of the Living Dead" and Betty Boop cartoons), available for viewing and classical musical recordings available for downloading.
Cardholders may check out up to four titles for seven days each, and titles without holds may be checked out again. Like regular library books, however, only a limited number of copies of an audiobook are available, and waits for some of the most popular books aren't unusual.
The free and easy-to-use service is provided by Southern Pines Public Library and N.C. Digital Library and powered by OverDrive Inc.
To check out and download audiobooks and eBooks or for information about upcoming OverDrive training sessions, visit www.sppl.net or call the library at 692-8235.
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