The Southern California Library Cooperative (SCLC), in partnership with the California State Library, presented a funding opportunity this year for California public libraries to purchase e-resources—such as e-books, e-audiobooks, and databases—in Crisis Collections. These collections serve to help address the increased demand for e-resources as people practice physical distancing and access to physical library collections are limited. The South Pasadena Public Library was granted funding for $2000 to purchase e-audiobooks on OverDrive.
The Library went from seeing a generous OverDrive circulation rate of e-books and e-audiobooks in January of 1,961 materials to a dramatic and sustained jump since the physical building was closed—reaching a peak of 3,971 e-book and e-audiobook checkouts in May alone.
While e-book checkouts make up the largest portion of OverDrive circulation, e-audiobooks are vital for families on long car rides, student comprehension of assigned reading, commuting workers, language learners, and people with disabilities and visual impairments. However, due to extra production considerations, e-audiobooks are significantly more costly than their e-book counterparts. Recognizing that the challenge of funding costly e-audiobooks often creates a gap in online collections, the South Pasadena Public Library chose to focus on e-audiobooks with the micro-grant. All SCLC member libraries such as Newport Beach Public Library and Arcadia Public Library will have access to these shared titles, increasing the range of Southern Californians who can benefit from the collection.
The e-Audiobook Collection adds new titles of high interest such as Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson as well as classics like Maya Angelou’s I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. The collection includes children, teen, and adult titles, and covers both fiction and nonfiction. With a South Pasadena Public Library or Southern California Library Cooperative member library card, users can now find this collection for free on OverDrive or the OverDrive Libby app.
For assistance, contact the Library at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone during Library Takeout hours (Monday-Thursday 11:00AM-7:00PM, Friday-Saturday 10:00AM-5:00PM, Sunday Closed).