Originally Posted by VillageReader
I don't even think libraries own most of their popular fiction. Think about a Stephen King, DaSilva, Nora Roberts.... A small library may only want to own 2-3 copies of any popular fiction for the long term, but need 30 copies during the peak demand period when a book after the book is released. The solution is to rent 27 copies, not own them, and send them back when the peak demand begins to subside. If I'm not mistaken, I think there are some publishers that may even show a book as a library edition on the copyright page.
The libraries actually purchase a yearly subscription service from Overdrive. They prepay based on the number of books/copies they allow on checkout. I think that is why there are many different rules based on the size of the library budget. i.e. 5 items-2 weeks (Newport Beach abt 100 titles) versus 100 items-3 weeks, (NY more than 15,000 titles) and 20 items - 3 week (Seattle 4,000 titles).
In any case, it's a wonderful service.