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The MCPL Blog: E-books

Free Access to Books for Teens

books and headphones

May 31, 2022

Summer will be here soon! As a teen, you may not be any less busy when school is out. Maybe you’re working more hours at your job, visiting family or spending time with friends. Whatever you're up to, make sure to include reading great books in your summer plans! In addition to visiting your local Marathon County Public Library location or participating in our Summer Reading Club, here are three other ways to access free digital materials for teens this summer: With Sync, patrons can use a Sora account to read two different audiobooks per week. The program runs from April 28 until August 17. If you don’t have a Sora account through school, you can sign up for a free account. Please note, these books...

Audiobooks Books E-books Libraries Online Resources Summer Library Program Teens Websites

The Books of CWBF 2021!

CWBF logo on 2021 book covers

September 9, 2021

The following is a selection of books written by authors featured in the 2021 Central Wisconsin Book Festival (CWBF)!   From fiction to nonfiction to poetry, this year's CWBF will be a great opportunity for members of the community to hear from notable writers with diverse backgrounds.  Check out the following items before or after the festival to explore their creations:

Authors Books Catalogs and Collections Central Wisconsin Book Festival E-books Events Graphic Novels Poetry Reading Recommendations

OverDrive app users should switch to the Libby app soon!

OverDrive and Libby app logos

August 18, 2021

If you use the OverDrive app to access Wisconsin's Digital Library for free e-books, e-magazines and audiobooks, please plan to switch to the Libby app by the end of 2022. The OverDrive app is being "sunsetted" by its creator — i.e. the app will no longer be updated or supported in the near future, and eventually will be discontinued. Additionally, the OverDrive app will not be available in the Apple App Store, Google Play, and the Microsoft Store starting in February 2022. It's unclear when the OverDrive app will be removed from the Amazon Appstore.* Current OverDrive app users can continue to use the app until early 2023. All of the same e-books, e-magazines and audiobooks are available on...

Books E-books Online Resources Technology

The Books of CWBF 2020!

CWBF logo with featured book covers

September 1, 2020

The following is a selection of books written by authors featured in the 2020 Central Wisconsin Book Festival (CWBF)!  From fiction to nonfiction to poetry, this year's "virtual" CWBF will be a great opportunity for members of the community to hear from notable writers with diverse backgrounds.  Check out the following items before or after the festival to explore their creations:

Authors Books Catalogs and Collections Central Wisconsin Book Festival E-books Events Graphic Novels Poetry Reading Recommendations

Teens: Read from Another Perspective

Protest against systemic racism

August 18, 2020

A lot of events in the news recently, including that regarding institutional racism and the protests held by the Black Lives Matter movement and other groups, can bring up a lot of questions. It did for me, even as an adult. Why is this happening? What happened in the past, and how did we get here? Those questions got me thinking about other social issues we’re currently facing right now, including immigration and transphobia. Why is life hard for so many immigrants, when we’re an entire nation of them? What’s the difference between gender and sexuality? As you start to examine history, you start to see that it’s a story created and controlled by the winners of wars and other conflicts. This got me...

Books Community E-books Education Reading Recommendations Teens

Fairy Tale Reads for Teens, Part 2

Frog Prince

July 8, 2020

A few weeks back, we posted a list of fairy tail retellings for teens. These novels retold the stories of Sleeping Beauty, Beauty and the Beast, Cinderella, and other famous tales in modern times, or with new twists to the stories. Since there were so many good recommendations to share, we had to split the list into two parts. Below, you'll find the second list, which features retellings for such tales as Little Red Riding Hood, The Frog Prince, Rumpelstiltskin, and others.  Enjoy these young adult and middle-grade (MG) novels that use fairy tales as the basis for the story, and let us know - what's your favorite fairy tale adaptation or retelling?​

Audiobooks Books E-books Reading Recommendations Teens Tweens

A National Library Week Like No Other

2020 National Library Week logo

April 22, 2020

The week of April 19–25, 2020, is National Library Week — a time when libraries across the country typically celebrate their myriad offerings and show appreciation for the patrons they serve.  However, that celebration is drastically different this year due to precautions related to the COVID-19 coronavirus. The Marathon County Public Library’s (MCPL) Board of Trustees voted to close all 9 MCPL locations to the public beginning March 17, 2020. A "Safer at Home" order from Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers went into effect on March 25 stating, “Libraries shall close for all in-person services, but may continue to provide on-line services and programming.” The order was originally...

COVID-19 E-books Events Facility Improvement National Library Week Wisconsin's Digital Library

Escape isolation with these Harry Potter read-alikes!

teen girl reading a tantasy book

March 21, 2020

Stuck at home without books? Looking for something to listen to while you do other things? Then consider the following Harry Potter-like fantasy titles, which will help you escape home quarantining and take you to a far away land! All of these titles are available for checkout on the free Overdrive and Libby apps, which can be found in most app stores on your tablet, smartphone or computer. All you need is your Marathon County Public Library card and PIN number (usually set as the last four digits of your phone number) to log in.  Check back throughout our closure for new book lists and recommendations for different genres that are available via Overdrive and Libby. And if you have any...

Books E-books Reading Recommendations

Changes to hold options in Wisconsin's Digital Library

OverDrive screenshot

March 12, 2020

Wisconsin's Digital Library (WDL) is always working to improve your digital library experience, and this occasionally includes adding or changing features. Starting in March, when a digital library hold becomes available for you, you can borrow it immediately (within three days) or have it delivered later.  The "deliver later" option keeps you at the front of the wait list but passes that copy of the title to the next person in line. This feature gives you more control over your holds, so you can borrow and read titles when it's most convenient for you.  Also, to make the "deliver later" option possible, the "auto-checkout" option for holds has been removed.  If you need...

E-books Wisconsin's Digital Library Online Resources

Wisconsin’s Digital Library offers “Lucky Day” collection!

WDL Lucky Day screenshot

February 24, 2020

Wisconsin’s Digital Library (WDL) offers a huge collection of free e-books and mp3 audiobooks, but the most popular of these items are subject to waiting lists, just like physical library items. However, thanks to a new “lucky day” feature, you have a chance to “skip the line” and check out some of these high-demand items without waiting! To browse this new collection in the Libby app, select “Explore” and choose “Skip the Line,” or if you use the OverDrive app or the WDL website, choose “Available Now” in the main menu and look for the “Lucky Day” section. Visit for more information about Wisconsin’s Digital Library!  

E-books Reading Recommendations Audiobooks Wisconsin's Digital Library Technology

Wisconsin's Digital Library needs your input!

Wisconsin's Digital Library needs your input to improve!

February 5, 2019

To those of our patrons who download e-books and audiobooks from Wisconsin's Digital Library (OverDrive / Libby): Please take a few minutes to complete the survey available at the following link: Your input will help the Wisconsin Public Library Consortium (WPLC) – the organization that maintains the digital library – as they continue to grow and develop this collection of e-books, audiobooks and other digital materials for Wisconsin library patrons. This survey is performed annually, will take an average of 10-15 minutes to complete, and is available through February 28, 2019. We thank you in advance for your time and feedback!

Wisconsin's Digital Library E-books Online Resources

Wisconsin's Digital Library exceeds 5 million checkouts!

screenshot taken of main page of Wisconsin's Digital Library

January 25, 2019

Have you used the Overdrive or Libby apps in the last year? If you have, then you were one of the millions of people who checked out items in 2018, when these two apps had a record year for checkouts and downloads! Overdrive has reported that, nationwide, about 274 million e-books and audiobooks were checked out via Overdrive and Libby last year. 185 million of those checkouts were for e-books, while 88 million were audiobooks. 43,000 libraries across the U.S. are part of the Overdrive and Libby systems, thus proving their is a strong demand for digital content. Wisconsin's Digital Library (the system that the Marathon County Public Library and its patrons have access to) did spectacularly well,...

E-books Wisconsin's Digital Library

Libby: A new app to access library e-books and audiobooks.

Meet Libby

June 30, 2017

Borrowers of library e-books and audiobooks, please take note! In June of 2017, OverDrive announced a new mobile app for Wisconsin's Digital Library called Libby. This app is designed to simplify the OverDrive mobile user experience, especially for new users. Libby will be added to Wisconsin's Digital Library in August as the preferred app for new users. Currently, there is no definitive timeline for when the current OverDrive app will be discontinued. Libby is currently available for download in the app stores for iOS and Android (but not yet for Amazon's Kindle Fire devices.) If you have any questions about borrowing e-books and digital audiobooks from the library...

E-books Audiobooks Technology Wisconsin's Digital Library

Join MCPL for the Latest Big Library Read!

Big Library Read: Two adults discussing a book.

June 12, 2017

Today marks the beginning of OverDrive's next Big Library Read, where patrons can get immediate access to Marie Benedict's debut novel The Other Einstein without having to wait! Now through June 26, MCPL patrons can log into their account on OverDrive (also known as Wisconsin's Digital Library) and borrow The Other Einstein on their smartphone, computer or tablet using the OverDrive app. The Big Library Read, held a handful of times each year, is a huge global e-book club where patrons can all read and discuss the same title together. The Other Einstein is the story of Albert Einstein's wife Mitza Maric, a brilliant physicist in her own right. Mitza has always been a...

Books Libraries E-books Wisconsin's Digital Library

Wisconsin's Digital Library will be upgraded in early November!

Wisconsin's Digital Library logo

October 25, 2016

For those of our patrons who use Wisconsin's Digital Library (aka Overdrive) to access e-books and audiobooks, please be aware that the WDL website will be getting a substantial upgrade in early November 2016. This upgrade will improve the appearance and funtionality of the site, and some familiar options may appear different. A preview of the new Wisconsin's Digital Library is available at the following link: If you have difficulties using the new site, please don't hesitate to contact us or visit your local MCPL for hands-on assistance.

Wisconsin's Digital Library E-books Audiobooks

Download e-Books? Please Take a Short Survey

reading an e-reader

February 3, 2015

Do you download e-books or digital audiobooks? If so, please consider taking a short survey from the Wisconsin Public Library Consortium (WPLC) about the digital collections. The WPLC was formed in 2001, and its main service is the Wisconsin Digital Library. This digital catalog is utilized by Marathon County Public Library and other Wisconsin public libraries to offer e-books and digital audio books to patrons. This short survey will help WPLC develop its digital collections so it is as relevant as possible to library patrons. Access the survey here. Curious about borrowing e-books or any other digital materials from the library? Visit our Wisconsin Digital Library page...

Wisconsin's Digital Library Technology E-books

OverDrive's Big Library Read: October 13-28, 2014

Big Library Read:

October 6, 2014

Check out OverDrive’s Big Library Read, which offers community-wide access to a YA title during October 13-28, 2014. During this special event, all card holders can simply download “Anatomy of A Misfit" by Andrea Portes from OverDrive. Since OverDrive is offering simultaneous use for this title during October 13-28, the title is available right away, with no waiting on hold for the next copy. The title expires at the end of the lending period for each user, not the end of the program. Synopsis: “Anika is the third most popular girl in her high school–despite feeling she doesn’t fit in with the popular crowd in her small Nebraskan town. To maintain her social status, Anika does whatever Becky Vilhauser (...

E-books Audiobooks Wisconsin's Digital Library

September 18th is Read an eBook Day!

Read an E-book Day graphic

September 12, 2014

Join OverDrive’s national celebration by checking out an eBook from the library, sharing your reading stories, or simply reading your favorite eBook. Read an eBook Day is a celebration of modern storytelling. Want to win a tablet? Share your eReading experience in the comments on OverDrive's Read an eBook Day page, or share on Facebook or Twitter using the hashtag #eBookDay to enter the contest. New to OverDrive and the world of eBooks? Overdrive has some great getting started guides and information for those new to OverDrive. Visit our Wausau location, call us (715-261-7230), or email with your OverDrive questions. We're here to help you!  

Wisconsin's Digital Library E-books

Pick the next Overdrive Big Read book!

August 1, 2014

Help select the next book for October's Big Library Read! In June, Overdrive's global e-book club read "A Pedigree to Die For" by Laurien Berenson. During the Big Library Read, Overdrive offers simultaneous use for a title during the program timeframe, with no waiting on hold for the next copy. The title expires at the end of the lending period for each user, not the end of the program. October's genre is Young Adult, and there are several selections that you can vote for through Friday, August 8. There is no limit on how many times you can vote. Submit your pick here, and get ready for the next Big Read!  

Wisconsin's Digital Library E-books

Overdrive's Big Library Read: June 3-18

Big Library Read logo

June 2, 2014

Looking for a new book to read on your Kindle or Nook for June? Check out Overdrive’s Big Library Read, which offers community-wide access to a new mystery during June 3-18, 2014. During this special event, all card holders can simply download  "A Pedigree to Die For, Melanie Travis Mystery Series, Book 1 " by Laurien Berenson from Overdrive. Since Overdrive is offering simultaneous use for this title during June 3-18, the title is available right away, with no waiting on hold for the next copy. The title expires at the end of the lending period for each user, not the end of the program. Publisher’s description of "A Pedigree to Die For": "The apparent heart attack that killed kennel owner Max...

E-books Wisconsin's Digital Library Technology

Beyond the printed page

woman typing on laptop with smartphone

March 25, 2014

Although 2014 is well underway, we’d like to not only take a brief look back at 2013, but also put the past in the context of our future here at the Marathon County Public Library (MCPL). We’re happy to say that more than 3,000 new people became registered patrons of our libraries in 2013. We welcome all of you, and we want you to know that we’ll do whatever we can to make your library experience as positive and fulfilling as possible. Nearly every day, we help patrons use Wisconsin’s Digital Library (aka OverDrive) for electronic books and audiobooks. We’ve fully embraced the electronic format of reading material, and more than 10,000 titles were added to this catalog in 2013. Supply has followed demand...

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Tablets, E-readers, E-books, Laptops…

assorted e-readers

July 22, 2013

...are available for checkout at your local MCPL!  Tablets and laptops are available for in-house use for up to two hours. Tablets are only available at the Wausau library and include iPad and Android-based devices. The laptops are all Windows 7 PCs. E-readers are available for 14-day checkout and  include NOOKs and Kindles. E-books are available via our partnership with Wisconsin’s Digital Library (aka OverDrive). More than 53,000 fiction and nonfiction titles are available. We also can provide you with checkout and download instructions for any device.  When it comes to helping you experience new technologies, MCPL has you covered! (from the MCPL...

Wisconsin's Digital Library E-books Newsletter

Get to Know "The Prince"

June 3, 2013

MCPL's Digital Classics Book Club in June is taking on a classic work of politics, Niccolo Machiavelli's "The Prince." This year marks the 500th anniversary of The Prince. The book also is one of the competitors in our Literary Smackdown event, and is scheduled to go up against In Cold Blood the week of June 17-23. MCPL has an unlimited supply of digital copies available, and anyone can join the discussion about The Prince on our Goodreads page. Please feel free to call 715 261-7230 or email us if you have questions.   

Book Clubs E-books Books

MCPL launching Digital Classics Book Club

BABBIT book cover

April 5, 2013

See classic literature in a new light by getting some Tolkien on your tablet, some digital Dickens or a little Kafka on your Kindle, with the Marathon County Public Library’s new Digital Classics Book Club. Each month, the group picks a new classic available free and without wait through the library’s Overdrive system here and here. Instead of a monthly gathering, members post their thoughts on MCPL’s Goodreads page (also free) as the pages turn. Need a hand getting started? Call or stop by the Wausau Headquarters' reference desk any time. The club begins in May with "Babbitt," Sinclair Lewis' scathing critique of the American Dream, told through the eyes of his disillusioned...

Book Clubs Wisconsin's Digital Library E-books

Buying an E-reader or Tablet?

man reading e-reader

November 16, 2012

E-readers and tablets are among the most-wished-for gifts this holiday season. Don’t forget that your library card can connect these devices to thousands of free e-books and audio books thanks to Wisconsin’s Digital Library (a.k.a. “OverDrive”)! Choosing which device will best suit your needs can be challenging, and while we can’t tell you which is “the best,” we can describe the different borrowing experiences for most devices and refer you to product review sources to help you reach a decision. Just call 715-261-7230, email us or visit, and we’ll help you get started. There also is an online device compatibility guide at

Newsletter E-books Technology

NOOK makes borrowing library e-books even easier!

NOOK e-reader

October 31, 2012

Finally, owners of NOOK Color, NOOK HD and NOOK Tablet are able to download e-books and audio books directly onto their e-readers using the free OverDrive Media Console app! This app bypasses the need to first download these files onto a computer and upload them to an e-reader using a USB cord, making these e-readers an ideal stand-alone solutions for accessing library books on the go. This app may be found by searching for "OverDrive Media Console" in the NOOK Store from these devices. Once it is installed, open the app and choose the "Get Books" option. Next, choose your library ("Marathon County Public Library" or "Wisconsin Public Library Consortium") and input your 14-digit...

E-books Technology Wisconsin's Digital Library

Tablets, E-readers, Laptops...

man using tablet

July 9, 2012

...are available for checkout at your local MCPL! Tablets and laptops are available for in-house checkout for up to two hours. Tablets are only available at the Wausau library and include Apple’s iPad and Android-based devices. Laptops are all Windows 7 PCs. E-readers are available for 14-day checkout and  include NOOK from Barnes & Noble and Kindle from For details, visit When it comes to helping you experience new technologies, MCPL has you covered! (from the MCPL Newsletter, July-Sept. 2012)   

Newsletter E-books

Change is Good...

woman reading e-reader

January 11, 2012

Change is good. We hear this mantra often, but is it really good? The late Carl Sagan would likely remind us that change is the only constant in the universe, so we might do well to accept change if we hope to keep our personal world balanced. On that note, we will be making some very healthy changes at the Marathon County Public Library this year, and we believe that those changes are going to help us to help you get the very best use from your libraries. Many of you are migrating to smaller information devices such as notepads, Nooks, Kindles, and similar handheld units. Remember to make use of our Overdrive digital download service that allows one to download e-books, audio books, videos, and music to...

E-books Technology

Getting Started with Library E-Books

e-reader on a stack of books

December 22, 2011

Did you receive a new E-Reader this holiday season? Don't forget about the thousands of free e-books available from the Library! Not sure how to get started? Visit for step-by-step instructions, or make an appointment for a free help session with a Library staff member! Walk-ins are especially encouraged at our Wausau Headquarters, Reference Desk (2nd floor), Monday-Thursday, 1:00-4:00 PM, and Monday-Tuesday, 4:30-5:30 PM. For other times and locations, please contact us ahead of time. (See below for what to bring.) We can also provide limited assistance via phone or email. More information: Coming to the library for e-reader assistance...

E-books Technology Wisconsin's Digital Library

Library E-Books Available for Kindle!

Kindle e-reader

September 23, 2011

Kindle-users, your wait is finally over! Now, you can check out Library e-books and view them on your Kindle, thanks to a partnership between Amazon (maker of the Kindle) and OverDrive (provider of e-books for libraries). Previously, library e-books were available to most other e-readers and mobile devices, but not the Kindle. For a list of OverDrive-compatible devices, click here. To get started, visit our OverDrive launch page at, but first, you may want to watch the video attached to this message for a brief overview of the process.  

Technology E-books

E-Readers: Holiday Shopping Guide

December 15, 2010

Thinking of buying an E-reader for yourself or a loved one? Consider getting a device that is compatible with the thousands of free e-books available from the Library via OverDrive! Click here for a compatibility guide. For more information and to browse the collection, visit

E-books Wisconsin's Digital Library

E-Readers: Holiday Shopping Guide

December 15, 2010

Thinking of buying an E-Reader for yourself or a loved one? Consider getting a device that is compatible with the 1,000  free e-books available at the Library via OverDrive! Click here for a compatibility guide. For more information and to browse the collection, visit  

E-books Wisconsin's Digital Library

Check out Library E-Books on your Apple and Android portable devices!

OverDrive Media Console

December 9, 2010

MCPL is proud to announce: OverDrive's app for iPhone® & Android™ now supports eBooks. With the free OverDrive Media Console app, you can download both EPUB eBooks and MP3 audiobooks directly to your device. Get the app today and download library books on the go! E-books from the library are available for a variety of portable devices, and e-readers. Click here to see if your device is compatible. Go to MCPL's OverDrive Catalog to access e-books, audiobooks, and more! If you have questions, or would like help, call 715-261-7200 or email

E-books Teens Audiobooks

Recently Expanded: OverDrive Ebook & Audiobook Collection

woman reading e-reader

November 17, 2010

In early October, nearly four-hundred new items were added to the Overdrive collection, including many new and popular titles in ebook and audiobook formats, perfect for your e-reader, mp3 player, or other mobile devices! To check device compatibility and browse the OverDrive collection, visit: Plus! Over 15,000 “Public Domain” Ebooks—classic or older works no longer copyrighted—are now available, thanks to Project Gutenberg! Visit the link above and click “Public Domain Ebooks.” For these ebooks, no login is required, and there are no borrowing limits! (from the MCPL Newsletter, Autumn 2010)

Newsletter Audiobooks E-books

Free Electronic Books

January 5, 2010

Looking for free electronic books but unsure of what library online resource you can use? NetLibrary is a collection of e-books that you can read on your computer after you have established an account. Set up your NetLibrary account on one of the computers at the headquarters library in Wausau or at any of the 8 branch libraries.   Then you will be able to login and read NetLibrary ebooks from any computer with Internet access. E-books from NetLibrary can only be viewed on your computer. These electronic books cannot be downloaded to an e-book reader or any other portable device.  OverDrive is a collection of e-books, music, audiobooks, and videos that you can download for...

E-books Online Resources