When the Jacksonville Public Library began offering downloadable eAudiobooks on March 1, Library Director Barbara Crossman had no idea what to expect. Would the library patrons embrace this new service? Would anyone use it?

Six months later, she has her answers.

“We’ve had a good response,” Crossman said. “Not overwhelming, but respectable. There has been enough usage to show that there are people here that like the convenience of downloadable audio.”

Thanks to a grant from the Texas Book Festival, Jacksonville Public Library patrons have anytime, anywhere access to more than 2,600 different eAudiobook titles for adults, teens and children.

Collections available include children’s, young adult, CEV Holy Bible, Pimsleur Language series, popular fiction and self-help. Together, these collections offer over 2,000 adult titles, with about 30 new titles being added each month. There are also over 500 children and young adult titles.

“This is a great service because it expands the library’s collection at a reasonable cost, and also offers the materials to our patrons anywhere they might be,” Crossman said. “As long as someone has access to the Internet, they can access the eAudiobooks.

“It’s very convenient for college and high school students, travelers or for anyone who just wants to listen to a good book.”

eAudiobooks can be downloaded or played on any desktop, laptop or portable device that supports Windows Media Player version 9 and above, or is branded “PlaysForSure” on older devices or “Certified for Windows Vista” on newer devices.

Users can also transfer favorite titles to a wide range of portable devices, including portable music players, portable media centers and more.

“We continue to be very excited about this service,” Crossman said. “We urge patrons that haven’t tried out the service yet to give it a chance. It really is convenient and easy, and it enables us to offer more audio titles than we would be able to afford if we had to buy the physical items.”

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