Happy Birthday Harry Potter!

It’s hard to believe, but its 20 years since the first Harry Potter book was published. On 26 June 2017 Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone celebrates its 20th anniversary, having sold over 450 million copies worldwide in 79 languages. We would like you to join us in celebrating this special occasion!

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone eBook will be available for unlimited access through our OverDrive ebook service between 26 June and 9 July. Everyone will be able to borrow the title simultaneously during this period with no reservations required.

All seven Harry Potter books are available on our OverDrive site in both ebook and audiobook format. You’ll also find spin-off titles such as Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child and The Hogwarts Collection. So why not re-read these special books or get hooked on Harry for the first time!

Summer Reading Challenge

The Summer Reading Challenge has arrived!  The challenge for children aged 5-12 is to read six books over the school holidays. The theme is Animal Agents – who are investigating strange goings on in the library! Children collect stickers as they go and help crime busting creatures solve the clues to reveal the mystery!

On successfully completing the challenge, children receive a certificate and a gold medal!! There are also some excellent prizes on up for grabs this year including Dynamic Earth family passes, astronomy evenings at the Royal Observatory and Edinburgh Leisure passes, with more to be confirmed.

Pop into your local library and sign up to join in the fun. Borrow some animal agents themed books whilst you are there or any book you like. You can also find out what children’s activities will be taking place over the summer in your library whilst you are there. As well as borrowing books from the library you can even download some of our children’s ebooks and audiobooks to join in with the fun. Check out our Summer Reading Challenge collection on our OverDrive Kids site.

The Animal Agents adventure starts on the 23 June and runs until 27 August.

Summer listening for teens

Are you a teenager? Like listening to audiobooks? Well the SYNC program is just what you need to make your summer sound good!

Visit the SYNC website and you’ll find two free audiobooks to download every week over the summer. Just visit the site every Thursday to see the new titles that are available. Install the OverDrive app on your phone or tablet and you can download the audiobooks straight to the app.

There’s a great range of titles from horror to romance to non-fiction with a bit of Terry Pratchett thrown in for good luck. I for one can’t wait to find out what exactly is “The Dorito Effect”!

The SYNC Program is available until the 17th August, but audiobooks for teens are available at any time from our OverDrive and OneClickdigital services.

New Audiobook Service

Edinburgh Libraries has added a new downloadable audiobook service to our suite of online resources. uLIBRARY is a growing collection of over 150 great British popular fiction audiobooks. Highlights include The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins and fabulous titles by Ann Cleeves, Quintin Jardine, Denise Mina and Jo Nesbo

You can borrow up to three titles at a time for 21 days and they are self returning so no fines. Use the uLIBRARY on your computer or through its Apple or Android apps.

Edinburgh Libraries now has four downloadable audio services – OverDrive, OneClickdigital, BorrowBox and uLIBRARY. All provide a different selection of publishers and authors to give you access to as full a range as possible. OverDrive and OneClickdigital have children’s and teen titles as well as adult content. Full instructions for using all of the services can be found on our Your Library site.

Together We Read!

Edinburgh Libraries are taking part in Together We Reada digital book club, being run by participating UK libraries from 11–25 May 2017. The club connects readers by them reading the same ebook in OverDrive, at the same time. Once you begin reading, you can connect with other readers and join the conversation on the discussion board.

We are delighted that the first Together We Read title is a Scottish crime novel by a Scottish author – Whisky from Small Glasses by Denzil Meyrick. The book centres on DCI Jim Daley, who is sent to investigate a murder after the body of a woman is washed up on an idyllic beach on the West Coast of Scotland. Far away from urban resources, he finds himself a stranger in a close-knit community. Love, betrayal, fear and death stalk the small town, as Daley investigates a case that becomes more deadly than he could possibly imagine.

There will be no waiting lists and no holds for this ebook – simply download the book via the OverDrive app or start reading in your browser. Find full instructions on how to use OverDrive on our Your Library website.

Check out the Together We Read site to see an interview by the author; to download a discussion sheet for hosting your own book group or to join in with the chat about the book on the discussion board.

Love the book? Then read the rest of the books in the DCI Jim Daley series on OverDrive. If you’d rather have the audiobook versions you can find the first few titles on BorrowBox another of our audiobook services.

Free magazines anyone?

Edinburgh Libraries online magazine collection just got even better! We’ve added 21 new titles to our Zinio service giving you a fantastic 130 popular magazines to choose from. New titles include:

Women’s magazines
Current affairs to motoring

Technology to men’s magazines

Check out the whole list of available titles as well as instructions about how to access Zinio on your device on our Your Library website.

To eBook or not eBook that is the question

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The subject of ebooks can illicit very strong opinions in some readers! With many people stating that they like paper and don’t want to read online. The thing is, it doesn’t have to be one or the other, you can do both. eBooks can be very handy all of a sudden when you’re stuck in the house with nothing to read or you’ve read everything you’ve taken on holiday.

Edinburgh Libraries has a fantastic ebook service for adults, teens and children. We are getting access to increasing numbers of bestselling titles now – as soon as they come out in hardback we’ve got them available as an ebook. Our OverDrive service now has over 9,000 ebooks so there is plenty to choose from.

Reasons to love ebooks –

1. eBooks offer more choice
The 10 ebooks you can borrow for three weeks comes on top of the 12 item limit for physical books. That’s 22 books every three weeks – more than enough reading for anyone (surely?!). And you can access them 24 hours a day 7 days a week.

2. eBooks help people who have vision problems or dyslexia
eBooks are great if you have sight problems that prevent them from being able to read your average paperback.You can change the font, text size and background colour all to make it easier for you to read. The OverDrive app allows you to use the Dyslexie Font too which helps if you are dyslexic.

3. eBooks are portable
One of the most frequently trumpeted advantage of ebooks is that they are more portable than printed books – 10 books that fit in your pocket or handbag.  Great for commuting, journeys or holidays.

4. eBooks mean you’re never far from the library
Whether you’re holidaying in Troon or Tenerife, as long as you’ve got internet access you’ve got the library with you, so you can return and borrow books to your heart’s content.

5. Nobody needs to know what you’re reading
And we’re not just talking about keeping your 50 Shades of Grey addiction a secret from your fellow bus passengers. Overdrive offers free access to lots of self-help books covering sensitive issues that many readers would rather not broadcast to people around them.

That’s five reasons, can you think of any others?