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eBooks: Smartphone/Tablet

Basic Information

Basic Information

  • OverDrive has a new app called Libby that promises a faster eBook experience for smartphones or tablets. However, you may use the original OverDrive app to download eBooks if you prefer.
  • You can check out up to 6 ebooks per library card at a time, and each eBook has a limit of 1 renewal.
  • All eBooks are free to download.
  • Titles are automatically returned at the end of the borrowing period, so there are no late fees for any digital materials!
  • eBooks can only be downloaded by patrons with a Waukegan Public Library card in good standing (unexpired, fines less than $10).
  • eBooks and other digital materials cannot be checked out or requested from other libraries.
  • If a title is already checked out by someone, you may place a hold on it just like you would with a physical book.

Contact the Reference Department

Need help?  Contact the Reference Department for direct assistance with downloading library materials to your device!

847-623-2041 x238

Not a Waukegan card holder?

You need an active Waukegan Public Library card to download digital materials. If you live in Waukegan and don’t have a library card, get one! If you live outside Waukegan, try contacting your home library to learn about their eBook collection.

Want More Help?

OverDrive has a great support website with helpful articles and how-to videos to help you download eBooks and troubleshoot any issues. 

If you use the Libby app on your smartphone or tablet, you can get more information here.

You can also find information about OverDrive specific to your device:

Download an eBook - Libby app

1. Download Libby app.

Open the app store on your device and download the free Libby, From OverDrive.  Open the app and tap Hi to get started.

2. Find your library.

Libby will automatically try to find your home library based on your location. If this is correct, tap Yes.  If not, tap No to search for your home library. 

3. Search for library (if necessary).

If the correct library does not automatically appear, you can either have Libby search for your correct library based on your location or you can manually search for the library by name, city, or zip code. Tap on the correct library to select it.

4. Add a library card.

Once you select a library, you will automatically be taken to the library's OverDrive home page. Tap Add Your Card or Add it now to log in with your library card number.

5. Search for a title.

Once your library card has been added, you can start looking for titles!  Tap at the top of the screen to search for a specific title, author, or keyword, or browse through some of the popular collections.

6. Select a title.

Tap on a book cover for more information. If a title is available to check out immediately, it will say Borrow underneath the cover image. If a title is currently checked out, it will say Place Hold, along with an estimate of how long you may have to wait for the book if you request it.

7. Borrow a title.

Once you find an available title, tap Borrow, and then tap Borrow again on the next screen. Tap the linked card to see how many titles you currently have checked out or on hold.

8. Download the title.

Once you tap Borrow, the title will begin downloading automatically. At this point, you can either Open Book to start reading right away, Keep Browsing to search for more titles, or Go to Shelf to manage your current checkouts and holds.

9. Shelf View - Renew or Return Early

Tap Shelf at the bottom of the screen to navigate to your library shelf at any time while using the Libby app. Tap the check mark next to a cover to view title options and more information.  Tap Renew to extend a title beginning 3 days from the expiration date. Tap Return Title to Library to return a title early.  Tap Send to Device to send a title to another device.

NOTE: You cannot renew a title with a hold on it.

10. Add another library card.

If you have family members with their own library cards, you can add those cards to Libby as well.  Tap Library at the bottom of the screen, and tap the library card button in the blue menu bar.  Tap Add Another Card to add a new barcode to the account.

Need help? Contact the Reference Desk at 847-623-2041 x238 or ! If you have a laptop or a mobile device, you can also bring in your device to the Reference Desk for in-person assistance.

Download an eBook - OverDrive app

1. Download OverDrive app.

Download the OverDrive app from the App Store.  Once the app opens, create an OverDrive account with your name, email, and password.

2. Add a library.

Tap the Menu button in the top left corner, then tap Add a Library.  Search for the library by zip code, then tap Waukegan Library to select it.

3. Search for an eBook.

Tapping Waukegan Library under My Libraries will take you directly to the library's OverDrive eBook collection.  You can search for a specific title or author, or you can browse by subject or collection.

4. Select a book.

When you find a book that you'd like to download, tap Borrow, or tap the circle with three dots to read a sample or get more information about the book.

5. View checked out titles.

Log in with your library card number.  Once the book has been checked out, a blue message will appear at the top of your screen.  Tap Loans to view your checked out titles.

6. Choose a format.

Tap Choose a Format and select EPUB eBook.  This should automatically add the title to your bookshelf.

7. Go to Bookshelf.

Tap the menu button in the top left corner, then tap Bookshelf to view your newly downloaded title!

8. Return book early.

Navigate to your Bookshelf in the OverDrive app.  Tap and hold the item you'd like to return, then tap Return to Library.  The title will automatically be removed from your account and made available for the next person.

Need help? Contact the Reference Desk at 847-623-2041 x238 or ! If you have a laptop or a mobile device, you can also bring in your device to the Reference Desk for in-person assistance.