Tuesday, May 1, 2012


Press Release

Library books now online as eBooks come to Timaru

Haven’t the time to go to the library to find a good read? Can’t make it to the library to return a book in time before incurring a penalty? Just can’t make it to the library because you live too far away?

The word is out.

The library world of book borrowing is now but a click of a mouse away, thanks to Timaru District Council libraries. From today library books can be browsed, borrowed, read and returned – electronically. And it’s free.

And Timaru District Libraries manager Michelle Miles says borrowers will be able to borrow eBooks to read on their eReaders, tablets, smart phones, ipods, laptops or desktop computers. All they need is an email address and a password added to their library membership record. This can be done by simply phoning the Timaru library on (03) 687 7202, or for Geraldine residents (03) 693 9336, she said. They can then download books on to their home computers or other devices by signing in to the eBook platform after visiting the Timaru District Libraries website http://www.timarudistrictlibraries.co.nz/

"t’s free and easy,” Ms Miles said.

“Whatever your reading taste, fiction, non-fiction, biographies, how-to’s, we are building a comprehensive collection for people to browse, and borrow from.

So far, more than 400 books are available online, but that number will grow rapidly as publishers make further online products available and the library purchases them.

Ms Miles said there were some limits on the books on offer because of restrictions placed by publishers. While the online nature of books will not detract from the library’s core business of lending hard-copy versions, the digital form offered new options.

“Apart from being able to borrow from home, online books offered the reader the ability to change font sizes to suit their vision.

“And eBooks for loan gives people a truly 24-hour library service, which is easily accessible no matter where they live in the district.”

However, that’s where the differences end.

Ms Miles said all eBook borrowing would be on the same basis as for hard-copy books.

“eBooks are lent for up to four weeks, the same loan period as hard-copy books. But they don’t need to be returned. Instead, eBooks self-expire at the end of four weeks making them available for another borrower. But they can be renewed,” she said.

Library staff are available to help people set up their eReaders or to help with any other eReading questions or assistance.

And Ms Miles said people could attend the regular Exploring eBooks session which is being held on Thursdays at 2pm at Timaru Library during May and June. Staff can also provide assistance between 9am-5pm on weekdays.

Information on getting started with eBooks is available at the Timaru, Temuka and Geraldine Libraries and on the Libraries website, she said.

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