E-book readers – Look Ma No Hands!

LogoWhat slips into my handbag and allows me to read while eating a muffin and sipping a coffee at my local cafe, all at the same time? What do I prop against my partner’s pillow in bed at night, then snuggle up under the blankets and read without getting my arms frozen on a cold night?

It’s my new e-book reader. I’m usually a bit of a technophobe so why have I recently gone out and bought myself an e-book reader?
With the Christchurch City Libraries’ new OverDrive downloadable e-book and audio book system coming online last year, I found myself not too confident about helping customers with enquiries about it, so I thought buying one would improve my knowledge and the smallness of them compared with the number of books they hold intrigued me.

First I researched the brands on the library online suitability page. Then I googled e-readers and found forums about brands, checklists where I could input what was important to me and was offered options for the best brands and models for my needs. From my research, I made my selection. Once purchased, again online, I downloaded the software easily onto my laptop from the OverDrive page, then practiced downloading, putting books on hold and searching the OverDrive book shelves and the more confident I became.

Overdrive has a great FAQ section and HELP! areas that help you find your way. I grew more knowledgeable when helping customers and because my e-reader slipped into my handbag so easily, I always had it handy to show customers looking to purchase one. I could also remind them that if they were having trouble, they could call the library and a friendly librarian would talk them through it.

coverI’ve just discovered the 23,000 public domain titles available through OverDrive from Project Gutenberg. I can download titles from this collection without waiting lists, needing to put anything on hold or it affecting my usual checkout limit.

One thing I keep forgetting to do with my e-book reader is to recharge, so occasionally the battery has run out at a crucial moment, such as when I’m in the middle relaxing at the local cafe, because I still think of it like a ‘real’ book.

But I’m loving it, I read both e-books and paper books, and with over 3000 titles on OverDrive, it’s widened my choice of reading and how and when I read, and I believe I am reading more which can only be a good thing!

Time to lose the Christmas spare tyre

Most of us have eaten too much over this Christmas period. I don’t know about you but my waistbands have shrunk and my tops seem a little shorter and tighter.

Not to be too puritan about eating and exercise I’ve decided to eat a little less, eat better food and get my body moving a little more.

So, let’s delve into what our libraries have to offer.

We tend to overeat in our western cultures. It is not easy to eat less when there is so much choice of yummy treats but portion control is what it’s all about.

The old adage “You are what you eat” reminds us that we should be more aware of what we’re consuming. Our bodies need fuel for all its parts not just the sweet and fatty foods. Try cookbooks for good nutrition.

Ok, now to the one area I despise – exercise. You can try having a gym workout at home, going for a run or walk, or getting into a sport. Search our catalogue for resources on a sport you’d like to try, or to improve in. If you’d like to join a local sports club search our community information database CINCH.

Good luck for the New Year!