Library Corner: Lighten your load: Travel with digital media from your library |

Library Corner: Lighten your load: Travel with digital media from your library

Anna Szczepanski
Grand County Library District
Portrait of beautiful young woman reading a book in the train.

In 2008, I took a nine-month hiatus to live and travel in Central America. In spite of my best efforts to pare down to only the essentials, my backpack upon departure resembled a massive growth on my back—half my height and a third of my weight. One of the biggest problems I faced was which books to bring? And how many could I carry?

Ten years have passed since then, and the ubiquitous tablets, Kindles, and phones we all carry have put an end to this dilemma. Electronic books, audiobooks and magazines can be pre-loaded before a trip or downloaded at the airport or in the car. Traveling this summer? Here’s a guide to the best of the Grand County Library District’s many digital media resources.

Overdrive is the company that provides libraries with access to digital books and audiobooks. You can load them on to most any device—phones, tablets, or a Kindle. The easy-to-use app called “Libby” is available from the Apple store or Google Play store. GCLD selects titles in Overdrive that are available only to our library cardholders. However, as members of the Marmot Library Consortium (with over 25 participating Colorado libraries), we get the added benefit of extra copies of the most popular in-demand titles.

Prefer to listen to your books? Download up to five titles at a time and listen in the car—there are a great number of books for kids and families as well. See what piques your interest at

Many travelers enjoy RB Digital Magazines which provides access to all the latest magazine titles without the bulk. With RB Digital Magazines you can stream the magazine live or download it to read later—like when your phone is stuck in airplane mode. Titles range from The Economist to more obscure magazines like Stereophile. The RB Digital magazine app is like having a whole newsstand at your fingertips.

The library’s newest streaming digital service is Kanopy films. With just a quick library card log-in, you can stream classic, independent and documentary films. The addition of Kanopy kids this spring means that those long car rides can include free access to PBS series and full-length films. Kanopy does require an internet connection or other data source for live streaming.

No need to leave your library behind when you are traveling this summer. Check out these resources and more at

Anna Szczepanski is the director of library resources and technology at the Grand County Library District.

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