Visit Your Local Library From the Other Side of the Planet

Mon 15 August 2011

You already knew the library has travel books and guides to sabbatical planning. Did you know you can still use the library while you travel?

Many Massachusetts libraries offer downloadable books and audiobooks to their patrons through Overdrive. Visit your local library's website to find out how to join. You'll be able to check out materials from anywhere in the world with an Internet connection. Remember to write down your library card number before you go! You'll need it to log in.

You don't have to live in Boston to have a Boston Public Library card. The signup policy says "Anyone individual who lives, works, attends school, or owns property in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and is at least 13 years of age may register for an eCard." See the BPL website for registration instructions.

If your library doesn't offer electronic delivery, you can purchase an annual membership to the Philadelphia Free Library for $35 per year. Since you have to mail in a check and registration form, be sure to take care of it before you leave.

Ebooks and audiobooks were a sanity saver while I traveled. Most of the English books I found while I traveled were expensive, even the used ones. The ebooks and audiobooks worked with my laptop, iPhone, or Zen MP3 player. The audiobooks aren't as compatible with iPhones as I'd wish, but the selection is improving. Overdrive, the vendor that powers this service, is partnering with Amazon to release books in Kindle format later this year.

But wait, there's more! Many Massachusetts libraries have subscriptions to the Mango and Rocket Languages. Card-carrying patrons can access these services from home - or anywhere else.

It's just two more reasons to love your local library.

Category: Tips

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