Public libraries and library books have been a staple in society, and the Brainerd lakes area community, for decades. But stacking up hard and paperback covers to take home for a few weeks of blissful reading is now made simpler with technology’s version of reading — eBooks.
Brainerd Public Library, in conjunction with the Kitchigami Regional Library (KRL), welcomed eBooks to the already bountiful book collection in a 3M Cloud Library Sept. 20.
“It’s very exciting for us to give our patrons another option and another platform to check out books, even from the comfort of their own home,” said Jolene Bradley, Brainerd Public Library manager. “We have made it very user friendly and offer other opportunities when reading, especially when it comes to children’s books.”
The eBooks offered are compatible with most personal computers as well as the Nook, Android and Android based tablets, Apple devices — iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch — and most Sony eReaders and the Kindle Fire. And with an active library card, just like its hard copy counterpart, eBooks are free to users at their disposal.
So how does it work?
Depending on your device visit www.krls.org/resources/downloadables (for PC users) or the app store and look for the free 3M Cloud Library. Once there, users can create an account and search through the options of popular fiction and nonfiction downloadable eBooks.
Books currently checked out may be put on hold, with users able to hold up to 10 books at a time. Once selecting and downloading the eBooks, users may check out up to five books at a time and may keep them checked out for 14 days — eliminating late fees, with the eBook automatically being checked back into the KRL after 14 days has expired.
“It’s great for those who lose books, or have a couple pages torn, it happens to everyone at least once or twice,” said Bradley. “This way, the book gets checked in on time everytime.”
Not only for teens and adults, KRL offers TumbleBooks for e-Kids and OneClickdigital audio books.
Tumblebook library is an online collection of animated, talking picture books, engaging kids in reading and learning in a way that’s conducive to their needs, and fun.
“My son knows that my Spanish isn’t the best,” said Bradley with a laugh. “So it’s great to have him listen to the words pronounced correctly in the read alongs.
“Not only in learning a different language, but it (Tumblebooks) works great for struggling students and even offers chapter books and AR reading levels, which parents love to be aware of.”
The audio books function similar to the audio books offered on cassette or CD, but now after downloading can be transferred to mp3 players.
And despite taking another step into the digital age, Bradley assures that in no way does it mean traditional library methods will be abandoned.
“Libraries will always be about reading, and books will never become extinct,” said Bradley. “The thing that has changed, like the newspaper, is the format that we get things. People are now reading on phones, tablets and eReaders and it isn’t only about holding the actual book in your hands anymore.
“We hope with this option it allows users who are more apt to using those devices the same level of access as our patrons who frequent the library walls.”
To check out things for yourself and for more information visit the Kitchigami webpage at www.krls.org.