Download eBooks

Maryland Digital eLibrary Consortium (Overdrive) 

Download eBooks to your computer or to a mobile device.  Checkout period:  7, 14, or 21 days (your choice).  Checkout limit: 6.   To checkout and download, you will need:

  • A valid library card
  • Internet access
  • A computer and/or compatible portable mobile device
  • Free software from the Maryland Digital eLibrary Consortium

Do you have a Nook, Sony eReader, iPad, Kindle, or other e-reader?  With your Allegany County Library System library card, you can read eBooks on your device from the library for free!  Check your device for compatibility with Overdrive. There are never overdue books or late fees.  Titles automatically return to the library's collection after 7,14,or 21 days.

Video Tutorial:  Downloading eBooks to Your Kindle     Viewable/Printable Directions (pdf)    Kindle Quick Start Guide (pdf)

Video Tutorial:  Downloading eBooks to an eInk eReader Device       Viewable/Printable Directions (pdf)    eInk Readers Quick Start Guide (pdf)

Video Tutorial:  Downloading an eBook using the Overdrive Media Console app (for tablet devices)    Viewable/Printable Directions (pdf)   App Quick Start Guide (pdf)

Video Tutorial:  Placing and Retrieving Holds  Viewable/Printable Directions  

Installing Adobe Digital Editions (pdf)

Finding and Installing the Overdrive Media Console Mobile App   

To get started downloading free ebooks, visit the Maryland Digital eLibrary Consortium website.  You can also click here to go to Overdrive Project Gutenberg eBooks (15,000+ titles that never expire and don't count against your library checkout limit)

See eReader Device Recommendations for Vision and/or Other Disabilities (from the Maryland Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped)


Frequently Asked Questions:

How do I find eBooks on the Allegany County Library System website?

The library offers popular fiction and non-fiction titles, as well as classic titles.  There are several ways to find eBooks from the library:

  1. By searching the library catalog:  From the Library home page at, search the library catalog from the search box in the banner.  Type in a title or author, for example.  Next, limit to Electronic Resource under Collection.  The results for ebooks and downloadable audiobooks will display.  Click "Download" to be taken to the download page on the Maryland Digital eLibrary Consortium website.
  2. By browsing our New eBooks list:  From the Library home page at, scroll to the bottom.  Click on New eBooks to view titles;  you can control the speed of the display by clicking the left or right arrows.  When you find a title, click on it to be taken to the library catalog. Click "Download" to be taken to the download page on the Maryland Digital eLibrary Consortium website.
  3. By searching the Maryland Digital eLibrary Consortium website:  From the Consortium website at, there are a variety of ways to search: by clicking on spotlighted titles, typing in the search box, or browsing through lists.  One recommended way to locate a title that is available for checkout is Advanced Search.  Advanced Search enables you to type in authors, titles, keywords, and check mark to only view titles that are showing as available. 
  4. By searching Project Gutenberg:  Looking for more EPUB titles? Consider one of these free public domain titles from Project Gutenberg! Choose from over 34,000 titles that never expire and don’t count against your library checkout limit!

How do I return an eBook or Downloadable Audiobook?

Books automatically return at the end of the checkout period. 

Can I return them early?

Ebooks can be returned early using Adobe Digital Editions.  Here's how:

  1. Open Adobe Digital Editions
  2. Select the Library View icon in the upper left corner.  The Adobe Digital Editions library is displayed.
  3. Under the Bookshelves heading, select Borrowed
  4. Click the eBook you want to return
  5. Click the Item Options arrow in the upper left corner of the selected eBook
  6. Select Return Borrowed Item
  7. Click Return to verify that you want to return the title. 
  8. The eBook is returned

Ebooks can be returned early using the Overdrive Media Console App on the iPad (version 2.3 or later).  Here's how:

  1. Open the Overdrive Media Console App
  2. Select the title and choose the Delete option
  3. Choose "Return and Delete" to remove the title from your Overdrive account. (Tap Edit, then Delete to do this)
  4. Don't choose "Delete without Returning" unless a title has already expired--this will remove a file from your device, but it will still be checked out to you.

Ebooks can be returned early using the website for Kindle.  Here's how:

  1. Go to and from the Kindle menu, select Manage Your Kindle
  2. Sign into your account
  3. Select the Actions dropdown menu next to the book you want to return.  (Remember that the words public library will appear next to library ebooks)
  4. From the menu, select Return this Book
  5. Select Yes to return the book
  6. After you return the book, it will still show in Your Kindle Library.  To remove it from the list, select Actions again, and from the dropdown menu select Delete from Library.

If it is an eBook, why is there a waitlist to check it out?

This is because of something called Digital Rights Management.  Publishers and authors negotiate the rights to control their creations, whether the book is print, audio or digital in nature.  As a result, borrowing eBooks and Downloadable Audiobooks is similar to checking out physical books--one copy at a time per patron.  Libraries are talking to publishers to help them to understand what our needs are and what our customers want.  In the meantime, if another patron has already checked out a title, you may put a hold on it.  You will then be contacted via email when the title is ready for you to check out.  The Maryland Digital eLibrary Consortium makes every effort to provide the books our customers would like to read with enough copies to fill the holds as efficiently as possible.  

How can I suggest a downloadable title for purchase?

ACLS welcomes your suggestions to purchase additional titles.  We will make every effort to accomodate your request, but we cannot guarantee that we will be able to purchase the material. If you have a suggestion of a title, please send us an email.

Who do I contact if I have a question or problem?

The Maryland Digital eLibrary Consortium has an extensive Help section which may answer your question.  Our library staff are also standing by to assist you.  Please send us an email with a detailed description of your problem or question.  In order to facilitate troubleshooting, please include the following information in your correspondence:

  • Library card number
  • Title(s) of problem download(s)
  • Steps to reproduce the problem
  • Exact text of any error messages
  • URLs of any error pages
  • Applicable software
  • Operating system and version (MAC OS 10.6.5, Windows 7, iOS v.4.2, etc)
  • Internet browser and version (Internet Explorer 7, Firefox 3.6, Safari 5.0, etc)
  • If applicable, device type (Android, iPad, Nook, etc)