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Old 05-30-2009, 02:08 PM   #1
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Is it possible to rent ebooks (similar to Overdrive?)

I know there are lots of places to buy ebooks, but is there anywhere that I can rent them instead of a monthly fee? My library has overdrive and I can get ebooks from there, but their selection is a bit limited. I've looked on other library overdrive websites and they seem to have more of what I want - but of course, since I'm not a resident of that county, there's nothing I can do.

I would gladly pay a monthly fee to rent X books at a time. I really don't like the idea of purchasing them since I know I will only read them once and put them away.

Does any service like this exist? I know they have services to rent other digital goods - like music. Why not ebooks?
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Old 05-30-2009, 02:18 PM   #2
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The New York Public Library will let you borrow books even if you're not a resident. You just pay an annual fee, I think.
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Old 05-30-2009, 02:23 PM   #3
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Check out joining a larger library like the New York Public Library for $100 a year. They may have a bigger selection of what you like.
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Old 05-30-2009, 02:31 PM   #4
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There is no "rental" program like you are looking for.

The libraries suggested seem to be the next best option
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Old 05-30-2009, 04:10 PM   #5
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Thanks for the suggestion. This is probably cheaper than an ebook rental service.

Has anyone actually applied for membership and used their card?
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Old 05-30-2009, 05:06 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by forkyfork View Post
Thanks for the suggestion. This is probably cheaper than an ebook rental service.

Has anyone actually applied for membership and used their card?
Yes, some people here have......another suggestions, tho.


Do you have any family out of state? If so, ask them to send you a link to their library system.....That way you can check out the books available.
If you like it, You can get them to send you a card, and check out books that way......for free.

CLEVENET has an awesome selection of EPUB books.
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Old 05-30-2009, 06:45 PM   #7
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How does the NY library work? I have someone in New York that I can access their library card and it looks like you check them out and back in. But I wonder how? Also if the library card is in a different name, will that affect the reader that it goes on? Final question, what format do you get for the Sony 505? Adobe?

Thanks

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Old 05-30-2009, 08:01 PM   #8
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Hi NWinter,

I don't belong to the NYPL but I belong to a few other library systems and all of them seem to work the same. You check out books and download them using Adobe Digital Editions (the library will provide a link to this free software for you to download) then you can keep them 21 days and they automatically expire, though you can turn them in earlier than that if you want. For the Sony, you'd either want to download Adobe Pdf or Epub (preferably). And as long as your using the library card number and the PIN, it should not matter who's name is on the card. I'm using my boyfriend's library card number for the library from Michigan and I live in California, and there's really no way for them to be able to tell. Hope I helped answer your questions. Let me know if you have any more.
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Old 05-30-2009, 08:10 PM   #9
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I've not checked books out of the New York library, but I have used my sister's library card to check books out of the Seattle library. Since both libraries use the same technology, I'd expect the New York library to be pretty similar to Seattle's library in regards to checking out eBooks.

Library eBooks are usually available in 2 formats: Adobe Digital Editions (PDF) and Mobipocket format. The books are DRM protected, so you will need to either activate your device through Adobe's DRM server or register your device's PID with the library to read Mobipocket's DRM books.

I can check out the Mobipocket books and read them on my Cybook Gen3 ebook reader because I can activate that device through Mobipocket's DRM server, but I cannot read Adobe Digital Editions books on my Cybook Gen3 because that device does not support DRMed PDF files and cannot be activated through Adobe's DRM server.

All I need to check books out is my sister's login and password. When I check books out, I download them to my computer and them copy them over to the Cybook Gen3.

The eBooks time out after 21 days. So after 21 days, I can no longer access the book. If I want to keep the book longer than 21 days, I have to check the book out again after the book has timed out. With Adobe PDF books, you can "return" a book, which means you free up the book for other folks to check out before the 21 day period of time, but it isn't necessary to turn the book back in (I have read Adobe PDF library books on my computer).

The Sony Reader PRS-505 (or newer) with v1.1 firmware (or newer) supports DRM activation for Adobe PDF, but does not support Mobipocket formated books. Some books come only in PDF format; some books come only in Mobipocket format and some come in both formats. When you review the online book catalog you'll see what formats are available. You can review this link to learn more about this:

New York Public Library FAQs about Adobe PDF books
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Old 05-30-2009, 09:52 PM   #10
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I'm a California resident, but I have a New York Public Library Card. All I did was print out the application form on their website, fill it out and send it to them with a copy of my driver's license and a check for $100. They then sent me a card in the mail. The card is good for a year.

The check out procedure works just as everyone has described. It works great!

Natalie--not sure how it'd work for you--being that you're from Australia, but I seem to remember someone posting a while back that it was possible to get a NYPL card, even if you aren't from the US. Not sure about this though--you might want to send them an e-mail to see what they have to say. Before I joined I e-mailed them with a few questions and they responded back quickly.

The only thing I wish is that the NYPL offered ePub books--the only books they offer that work with the Sony are PDFs. They do have a large collection of these. I'm hopeful that they will begin offering ePub books shortly.

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Old 05-31-2009, 01:39 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by desertgrandma View Post
Yes, some people here have......another suggestions, tho.


Do you have any family out of state? If so, ask them to send you a link to their library system.....That way you can check out the books available.
If you like it, You can get them to send you a card, and check out books that way......for free.

CLEVENET has an awesome selection of EPUB books.
Okay, so I researched CLEVNET and now I'm drooling over their collection. Does anyone have a spare family member in Ohio that can get me a library card?
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Old 05-31-2009, 01:51 AM   #12
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Okay, so I researched CLEVNET and now I'm drooling over their collection. Does anyone have a spare family member in Ohio that can get me a library card?
That's what I'm looking for too! I wish they offered the ability to pay for a non-resident card like NYPL.

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Old 05-31-2009, 02:11 AM   #13
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Wish I could help you guys, but I think I'd have to bribe my family to get them to even enter a library, let alone sign up for a card! Then there'd be the regular payments to get them to renew every two years... I can't afford that much beer!
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Old 08-04-2009, 01:42 AM   #14
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Post elfwood

The eNYPL service is great, but be warned, they are concentrating more and more on audiobooks, a real downer for readers like me.

And if you are considering piggybacking off a New York resident's e-card, give the library a break--they are facing funding cuts like nothing you could believe--a hundred a year is little enough to pay for having up to 12 books checked out at one time for a 21-day period.

If anyone knows of any other public library that offers e-books to out-of-state readers for a fee, please post a reply.

I am a true readaholic--I edit/copy edit several dozen books a year, subscribe to local-area Mail-it services and eNYPL. Always looking for more sources.

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Old 08-04-2009, 12:45 PM   #15
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elfwood--

You do realize that eNYPL has over 12,000 downloadable books in Adobe PDF format on their website, don't you? (These are from their Overdrive program.) You can read these on your computer, or on any device that supports Adobe Digital Editions DRM. More and more eBook devices are being released that support Adobe DE DRM.

Admittedly, the PDF files don't look as good on my Sony 505 as the ePub files I've downloaded from other libraries, but they are readable. I'm pretty sure that NYPL will begin offering books in ePub format soon as well. (I've done searches for specific books from Overdrive's website, and sometimes they show an ePub edition available at NYPL, but clicking on the link brings up an error page.)

You can search for other libraries from Overdrive's search page http://search.overdrive.com/ . Most libraries don't offer cards to non-residents, but some do--with the payment of a fee. Check out to see which (if any) libraries offer books that you're interested in and in a format that's compatible with your device. Then check to see what type of residency requirements those libraries have (most have them posted on their website).

Hope this helps--
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