Free Downloads for Your New Toys


Eileen Button

Eileen Button

If you’re one of the lucky ones to receive a new e-reader, phone or tablet this

Christmas, you’re probably wondering, “Now what?”

Your first stop should probably be for free downloads.

Bibliophiles (a.k.a., book lovers) will be happy to learn that the GDL has over 20,000 items through OverDrive, its downloadable book service. Here you’ll find e-books and audiobooks for every imaginable device.

Fans of Evanovich, Roberts, Coben or Baldacci will find current titles available. If all the electronic copies are checked out, you can place a hold on an item and will receive an email when it’s ready. Five books can be checked out and seven can be placed on hold at a time. You can also build a wishlist of titles to check out in the future.

Perhaps the best part is that there are no late fees. You get to pre-determine the length of your borrow time (7, 14 or 21 days) and the books automatically return themselves on their due dates. Trust me, this is a wonderful feature for those who have a little too much going on in their lives. (Ahem.)



I know what many of you are thinking. If you’re a semi-committed Luddite (like myself) you may insist that you enjoy holding a book in your hands. You like the heft of it, the scrape of the turning pages and, yes, even the scent of a well-loved book. I get that.

But even the almost-Amish will enjoy the spur-of-the-moment convenience of being able to read a book at a moment’s notice. Personally, I’ve downloaded books on my phone and read them on lazy Saturday mornings, which is a lot better than sneaking into my local branch in my jammies.

Books are not dead, they’re simply changing. These days, we have more ways than ever to enjoy one of the best gifts of all: a good book.

In the words of Frank Zappa, “So many books, so little time.” Happy reading!

Eileen Button is the Community Relations Manager for the Genesee District Library. She can be reached at

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