Public Library eBooks and Audiobooks More Popular Than Ever


OverDrive app

One great thing about ebooks is that fact that many public libraries around the world support ebook lending for free. All you need is an internet connection, a library card, a device to read on, and some time to read.

Downloads through OverDrive’s library lending service increased by 24% in 2015. They set a new record of 169 million digital downloads, with over 125 million ebooks borrowed and 43 million audiobooks lent.

OverDrive is the leading library lending service. There are others too, like 3M and Odilo, so those numbers only account for OverDrive’s share of the overall library lending market.

Here’s an article that explains how to get free ebooks from libraries using OverDrive if you haven’t tried library lending before.

Last week OverDrive posted a list of their top 5 ebooks and audiobooks borrowed from libraries in 2015.

Top eBooks borrowed from libraries
1. The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins (Penguin Publishing Group)

2. All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr (Scribner)

3. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn (Crown/Archetype)

4. The Martian by Andy Weir (Crown/Archetype)

5. Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee (HarperCollins)

Top digital audiobooks borrowed from libraries
1. The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins (Books on Tape)

2. All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr (Simon & Schuster Audio)

3. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn (Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Group)

4. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling (Pottermore)

5. Yes Please by Amy Poehler (HarperCollins)

5 Responses to “Public Library eBooks and Audiobooks More Popular Than Ever”

  1. I find that Overdrive’s selection is pretty barren. Luckily, my local library also has 3M which has a bigger selection of quality (i.e. non-bodice-ripper-selfpublished crap) than Overdrive. 3M is my go-to resource.

    • It depends on your library. Mine has a good selection through Overdrive. Plus, they take purchase suggestions and fulfill them pretty quickly.

  2. I borrow a LOT of books from the library. But if one uses a black and white ereader one can’t borrow via overdrive.

    • Most E Ink ereaders do support library books. The ePub ones just have to be authorized with ADE. Kindles are easier because the library books get wirelessly delivered instead having to deal with Adobe and sideloading. Unless you mean borrowing directly from ereaders. Sony’s had built-in support that was really nice (too bad they quit making ereaders). Android ereaders can use the OverDrive app. I’ve heard of people using a Kindle’s browser to checkout books but I could never get it to not crash long enough to get through the process.

    • I agree this is a pain!!! I have both a Kindle and Kobo I can’t use my Kindle at all (I’m in Canada) and I can borrow with the Kobo but only with a PC computer and some extra software . I don’t like reading on my iPad but it is the only seamless way for me to use Overdrive and Zinio.

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