In keeping with the tradition of making books available to everyone – at least in the US – Amazon.com now allows Kindle users to download and borrow Kindle e-books from their local library. The loan process works similarly to how you check out paper books at the library, but there a few perks for the Kindle e-loans.
Borrowed Kindle books get the same features and services that come with purchased ones, including Amazon’s Whipersync technology for synchronizing books between devices, and the ability to annotate and add notes to pages.
How It Works
Currently, Kindle books are available at more than 11,000 libraries in the U.S., according to Amazon.com. In order to borrow and download a book from your local library you will have to use of one of several OverDrive Media.com’s Mac and Windows desktop platforms, or an iOS, Android, and BlackBerry mobile application.
You will also of course need a valid library card and a registered Kindle device or reading app. When you browse your local participating library, click the “Get for Kindle” button. This will open the Amazon.com Kindle website, and from there you can download (borrow) your selected Kindle ebook to your specified Kindle device or e-reader app.
Amazon says that, “after a public library book expires, if you check it out again or choose to purchase it from the Kindle store, all your annotations and book marks will be preserved.”
It’s not clear why e-book loans can’t be done directly through Amazon, but it’s nevertheless great to see the service available.