Wednesday 11 February 2015

Access to free e-reading

If you've read this blog before, you're probably surprised at the title of this post. E-reading? I thought out friendly neighbourhood Book Lover hated that stuff? It's true that I'm not a fan, but I know that a lot of people are, so I thought I'd clue them in on a couple of my recent discoveries.

If you live in Wales in the UK, then you can have access to free library e-books via the welsh libraries e-books website - if your local library is participating (so that's Bridgend, Caerphilly, Cardiff, Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion, Swansea, Denbighshire, Flintshire, Conwy, Gwynedd, Ynys Mon, Merthyr Tydfil, Monmouthshire, Neath Port Talbot, Pembrokeshire, Powys, RCT, Torfaen, Vale of Glamorgan and Wrexham libraries) and you have your library card and pin number, you can login. The e-books aren't compatible with K-devices which are sold by Amazon (cannot bring myself to even type that word *shudder*) and they will be automatically returned at the end of your loan period; you can't return them early.

Most libraries in the UK have a similar scheme, so I suggest checking your local library website for availability in your area. Many libraries worldwide, particularly in the USA, also use the OverDrive website, from which you can borrow e-books.

Back to Wales, digital additions of magazines are available via the Welsh libraries' Zinio collection .

I do ask that you try to keep print copies of both books and magazines in mind, there's nothing quite like the magic of the printed word. But I understand the use of digital media to access materials you maybe wouldn't be able to view otherwise - this includes international publications, Welsh language material (which can be more difficult to track down) and textbooks which may be needed for education, college, university, whatever. This way you can borrow it, read the part that is useful to you, and return it automatically, without having to pay out huge sums on a book you may only need once. If you're going to be using the book often, you still may want to invest in a physical copy.

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