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ST. MARYS — Kindles, Nooks and tablets topped the wish list of many area residents this holiday season, and a local library is offering a slew of items for these devices at no cost to library patrons.
The St. Marys Community Public Library offers a variety of e-books, audiobooks and movies that may be checked out for use on a variety of devices, including Kindles, Nooks and Sony Readers. E-books may also be checked out for use on a Windows or Mac computer. A complete list of supported devices can be found on the library’s digital catalog website.
The process of checking out a digital copy is similar to checking out a physical copy. Patrons can access the library’s digital catalog by visiting the St. Marys Community Public Library’s website, StMarys.lib.oh.us, and clicking on the “Library Catalogs” link along the left side of the page. There patrons will find an “E-Library” link which takes them to the digital catalog. Patrons can search the selection for a book, audio book or movie they may be interested in and click “Add to Digital Cart.” After collecting a group of e-books and audiobooks that they are interested in — up to 10 items may be checked out at one time from the digital catalog — patrons can check out the books by entering their library card number and PIN.
St. Marys Community Public Library Youth Services Coordinator Paula Drummond said the digital catalog has a mix of newly released books and older books. A variety of fiction and nonfiction genres is available, and the selections can be sorted to help patrons find a book they would be interested in. Books can be sorted by most popular, publish date and date added to site.
Drummond noted patrons may check out items for seven, 14 or 21 days. After the allotted number of days is up, the book will no longer be available.
“It’ll say the item has expired,” Drummond said of the message that appears on the device once time has expired.
St. Marys Community Public Library Assistant and Webmaster Jay Miley noted that for most e-books and audiobooks, there are only a limited number available to be checked out at one time.
“It’s just a regular book in that if there are three copies, only three people can check them out,” he said.
When all the copies of an e-book are checked out, patrons can add their name to a waiting list and will be notified when the book is available for checkout.
“I will get a notice in my e-mail when a book is available, and I have three days to check the book out,” Drummond said, noting that after the three-day window is over, the book will be given to the next person on the waiting list.
E-books and audiobooks can be checked out from any computer, Drummond said.
“They can check out a book on the library website from any computer, but they need their personal computer to transfer a book to their device,” she said.
After checking out a book, patrons will be prompted to download the book. Step-by-step instructions specific to each device are available on the website by clicking the “My Help” link along the left side of the page.
Miley noted that in order to download items from the digital catalog, patrons will need to have either Adobe Digital Editions or OverDrive Media Console, both of which are available on the website.
“It’s all free software, so there’s no cost for this,” he said.
In addition to the digital catalog, St. Marys Community Public Library patrons can access the Ohio E-Book Project catalog at Ohdbks.lib.overdrive.com.
“Sometimes SEO (the digital catalog) won’t have something but the Ohio E-Book Project will,” Miley said.
Miley noted that the library has had an increase in the number of e-books checked out since the holiday season.
“In December, we had 144 items checked out, and so far this month (Jan. 9), we’ve had 66 items checked out,” Miley said. “People are checking out a lot of stuff.”
For more information, visit the St. Marys Community Public Library or go online to StMarys.lib.oh.us.