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BUT BRING YOUR OWN HARDWARE: DL Library now offers Kindle

ELECTRONIC BOOKS are now available for check-out at the library.

Who says the library is a dinosaur?

The Detroit Lakes Library, part of the Lake Agassiz Regional Library, has recently expanded its e-book collection by becoming compatible with the Kindle.

"We are super excited about having this," said Detroit Lakes Library Public Service Supervisor Deb Wahl, "This is going to open up so many more options for our customers."

The Detroit Lakes Library, along with other branches of the LARL system, has had access to the Nook and other downloadable e-books for several months.

Amazon, however, is the best-selling e-book reader in the U.S., and having digital access to items in their library is a huge addition to an already growing trend.

"People like this," said Wahl, "You can check out books at anytime from the comfort of your own home -- sitting there in your pajamas, drinking your coffee or hot chocolate anytime, day or night."

Here's how it works:

First, you need a library card.

Then, you log onto the library's website (, and punch in your library card number.

Then, click on the link to the digital downloads.

Browse through the several categories, including fiction, non-fiction, audio books and 'Hidden Gems'.

Once you select your books (you can have as many as 10 items out at a time) you check out and choose whether you want it in the Kindle version or the Nook's e-pub version.

"So if you choose the Kindle, it takes you to the Amazon page, which lets you get the books there," said Wahl, "You confirm your check out, and it will go directly to your kindle."

But Kindle books are not just for Kindle readers.

Owners of iPads, iPhones, iPods or PC's can also access the books for free.

Simply download the Kindle app (which is free and found on the Amazon website) and go from there.

"I don't have a Kindle myself," said Wahl, "but I can still download these books right onto my computer."

Different items have different due dates.

E-books will stay on your device for up to 21 days, while audio books have a 14-day limit.

The books can be "dropped off" through each person's Amazon account once the customer is finished with it.

A high point here is, there is no late fee if it's not dropped off on time.

"All that will happen is, the ability to use them just disappears," said Wahl.

Readers cannot renew them for three additional weeks like traditional books because there is only one digital copy of each book throughout the entire LARL system, so the idea is to read it and let it go for somebody who has it on their 'wish list'.

Wahl says right now they have roughly 1,600 to 1,800 Amazon books, and the goal is to build that library up.

"We do have to purchase the digital rights to these books, so we don't have everything and anything," said Wahl, "but it's a really good start."

With the understanding that not everybody is tech-savvy, the Detroit Lakes Library is holding free classes once a month on how to download e-books, no matter what your device.

"We'll show you how to input your library number and some of the quirks that come along with this," said Wahl.

The next class is scheduled for Tuesday, October 4 at 6:30 p.m. in the Detroit Lakes Library.

Registration is required; call the library to do so.