As a kid, I went to the library weekly, grabbing new books and getting yelled at for misplacing overdue ones. Even now, I remember feverishly looking for the next book in the Boxcar Children series, or re-reading How To Eat Fried Worms for the 86th time. Then I went for about ten years without public library card. I guess my recreational reading activity dropped due to school, work, and good ole’ cable TV. For a while I just bought every book I wanted from Amazon (mainly with gift certificates from various online offers). But over the past year I have again become a regular library visitor.
First of all, the selection is great. In addition to books, a lot of popular music albums and DVDs are available. Recently, I’ve gotten the newest Snow Patrol album and a full season of the Sopranos. Other features which may be in your area are Library2Go, which offers audiobooks that you can listen to on your mp3 player, and NetLibrary, which offers e-books that you can download to your computer or PDA.
My favorite feature is the internet-based hold system. I go online, pick out all the books I want, and make a few clicks. I get to see exactly how many people are ahead of me, and when the book is ready, it’s shipped directly to my local branch (only a few blocks away) and I get an e-mail saying it’s waiting for me. Renewing online is just as easy. I love it.
So don’t miss out on this great resource. I still buy a lot of books, but I can browse and explore so much more content this way. Also, this means there’s no good reason why you can’t read some of the best investment books out there. Check one out this weekend!
By Jonathan Ping | Frugal Living | 3/30/07, 2:30am