Six Reasons to Digitally Connect to Your Local Library
By Annette Rey
I love books – books I can hold, books I can smell, pages I can turn. I even take joy in categorizing them and lining them on shelves. I enjoy looking at the titles on their spines, and they seem to watch me from their lofty perches as I remember discovering their delectable secrets that revealed themselves as I lightly tiptoed, and sometimes hungrily dashed forward, through their words.
I didn’t think I could enjoy reading books on an electronic device, but the ease and convenience of acquiring reading material won me over. There are other reasons to give this a try, specifically as related to retrieving books from your local library through apps designed for any device.
1) Convenient use at home – I was stranded at home on a weekend with a car needing repair on the coming Monday. This was a perfect time to install a library app on my Android tablet. No matter the weather or status, there is no reason not to have a new book to read.
2) Simplicity – Type https://meet.libbyapp.com/ into your search bar and download the app for your device. Click install. Once installed, follow easy steps to connect with your local library and enter your library card number.
3) Time-saving – No travel time used to the library or bookstore.
4) Effort-saving – When I hear of a book I might be interested in, I call Barnes and Noble and ask them if they have it in stock. If they do not, they order it into the store and call me when it arrives. I drive to the store, take time at the store to read enough of it to see if I want it, and if I do, I pay for it and take it home. If it is not what I expected, they put it on the shelf for sale. That’s a lot of effort we have traditionally spent finding a book we might like. With the library app, you can click on “read sample” and quickly discover if the book suits you or not. If not, move on to your next target.
5) It’s free! – Not to take sales away from us writers, reading books through library apps costs readers nothing. Don’t worry, writers. Readers who really love a book will often buy it, just to physically own it. Anyone who loves books, loves owning books. And no overdue fees, either! After fourteen days, books automatically disappear from your “shelf.”
6) It offers surprises and satisfaction – You can search by author and multiple genres. I am thrilled to have found a new (new to me) author that thrills me on several levels (book review to come) that I never would have found at a library or bookstore. Scrolling through the digital search pages, a title caught my imagination. When I read the synopsis, I thought it was probably a YA (young adult). But I kept an open mind and read the sample. I was delightfully hooked. The man has an uncanny talent at figurative writing and besides being an enjoyment to read, is valuable to me as a writer to study his technique.
The Libby app is user-friendly. It is not necessary to re-enter your library card number after the first time. The icons are clear and easy to follow. A world of books is at the touch of your fingertip. If a book is not available, you can put a hold on it. I’ve been told that access to magazines and newspapers through the app is in the works.
I’ll never stop buying books, but I have found a new way to enjoy a great variety of reading.
Pass this information on to people you know who are homebound due to illness or aged. Help them set the Libby app up on their devices.
Give them (and yourself) a free gift – the gift of reading!