Get Your Hands On eBooks For Free

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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Nooks, Kindles, iPads– book lovers everywhere have turned a page when it comes to the way they read. A group of women in Center City has made the leap. In fact, they created a high-tech book club.

“We all loved reading, we’re all very into technology and it just seemed like a natural fit,” says Elizabeth Dawson.

But Dawson found one drawback to e-reading.

“You know books can be expensive.”

It’s also not as easy to pass around your old books.

Amazon lets you borrow e-books for two weeks from friends who use Kindle.

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“You just have to have their e-mail address and you can only lend the book once,” says Dawson.

Nook users have a similar system. But unless your friends have extensive e-libraries, your choices are limited. That’s why these women were happy to try Lendle.

“I went and checked it out, I thought it was the greatest thing in the world,” says Lisa May.

It’s one of several sites that allows you to share e-books with strangers, and it’s free!

“You have a much bigger pool from which to choose material when it’s not just your small group of friends,” says May.

There is a catch — in order to borrow books, you have to have books available to lend. And just like sharing between friends, books can only be lent one at a time, so if you want to keep borrowing, you need to have a steady supply of books you’re able to lend out.

“Right now I’ve borrowed two books and I’ve lent one book out,” says Dawson.

But there’s another way to get your hands on free e-books– no strings attached– with the help of your local library.

Like 13,000 other libraries, Cherry Hill Public Library has made its digital collections available to members through a free application called Overdrive.

Reference librarian Tierney Miller, says checking out an e-book is just as easy as borrowing a traditional one, maybe even easier. You just need to visit your library’s website.

“You don’t have to physically go to the library and you don’t have to worry about paying fines if you don’t remember to return your items on time,” says Miller.

That’s because books are automatically removed from your device the minute the loan period is up, which can range from seven to 21 days.

Currently you need a Nook, iPad or Sony e-reader to borrow from your local library using Overdrive. However, Amazon has announced that later this year, Kindle users will also be able to take advantage of the free service.

Reported by Jim Donovan, CBS 3

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