patrons will soon be able to download free e-books onto their personal electronic devices. By the end of February, the library will become part of the Southern California Digital Library database, a collection of 4,000 titles pooled by member libraries.
The Arcadia library will also join the database's Library Advantage Program, which allows the library to purchase titles only Arcadia Library card holders will have access to.
The Friends of the Arcadia Public Library and the Arcadia Public Library Foundation will fund the library's new e-book services.
"It is important to offer this service due to the growing demand for e-books within the community," Acting Principal Librarian David Dolim said. "We are entering a hybrid age of media consumption where people’s reading habits will encompass both print and digital materials. Libraries have always placed great importance on providing in-demand materials no matter the format."
"Where once we purchased cassette tapes and microfiche, today we purchase Playaways, Blue-Rays, and now, e-books. Information formats are always changing, and it is our role to keep pace with that change and to make sure that we have the information people need in the format in which they need it."
The process of checking out an e-book is very similiar to checking out a print book — minus the hassle of having to trek to the library to pick up or return the book.
To get their e-book, patrons start by accessing the Arcadia library's Web site, which has a link to the Southern California Digital Library. They can also go directly to the Southern California Digital Library site.
There, patrons simply log in with their Arcadia library card, search for an e-book or e-audiobook, and download it to their device of choice, which includes Nooks, Kindles, iPods, iPads, computers, or smart phones.
Books can be checked out for up to 14 days.
After 14 days, the title expires and can no longer be played on the device it was downloaded onto, which frees up the title for another person to check out.
In March, the Arcadia library will begin offering e-book clinics to help the technically challenged navigate the digital library. Registration for these clinics begins March 1.
Clinic appointments can be made by calling Adult Information Services at 626-821-5569. General questions regarding the service can be directed to the same number.