Your Library Has Even More Free Stuff to Offer
I am a huge proponent for using your local library. I have four library cards, and I almost exclusively read books that I’ve loaned from my library. But I have recently learned about a whole new service offered by the library, and it is a game changer.
Hoopla is an app for e-lending that offers comics, movies, TV, and music (at least at my library. They also offer audiobooks and ebooks as well. Depends on what your library buys). My mom, a librarian, is the one who told me about it, after I was complaining about how I wanted to read The Umbrella Academy after watching the Netflix show, but none of my libraries carried it. “Have you tried Hoopla?” my mom asked. I had never heard of it. Within five minutes she had found out my library used Hoopla, and I had downloaded the app to my iPad. “Libraries aren’t always good at promotion,” my mom explained. Luckily, you have me, a person who readily gets obsessed with new discoveries and can’t wait to tell everyone I meet.
Hoopla is a separate app, as opposed to Overdrive and Libby, but you still use your library login to access materials. One key difference is that while apps like Libby (which I prefer to Overdrive) have a limited number of ebooks they’ll lend out, it seems Hoopla has unlimited copies. I got an entire comic series at once, and there was no mention of how many other users had it. There is a limit to how many loans you can take out a month, but it’s generous (my library’s limit is 22).
I have gotten comics from my library through Libby before, and to me honest it’s not really worth it. You often have to wait for weeks and because they loan out issue by issue, you have to have multiple items on hold at once and try to make it work out so you get them in order. Plus, maybe they’ll have three issues out of 10, and maybe they’re not even in order! It’s just not a great system.
With Hoopla, they have all kinds of comics, and their entire runs, and there’s no waiting. I have been meaning to read Saga for literal years, but the aforementioned Libby loan process such a pain in the ass that I kept seeing it and going, “Oh riiiight. I meant to read that!” and then repeating the cycle a few times a year. Once I knew about Hoopla, I had read all of Saga in a few days.
Sidenote! Now that I’ve finished Saga I have TEABS in a BIG way (TEABS, if you don’t read Forever Young Adult, is The End of Awesome Book Syndrome, when you finish an amazing book and nothing in life can compare to that wonderful world that you have now left behind). And then to make things worse, i have learned that Saga is on an extended hiatus for at least a year. I MEAN. You should read Saga if you haven’t already, but prepare your body and mind for TEABS.
My library’s Hoopla also includes movies, TV, and music, and it’s not really anything you can’t get from streaming services. BUT, if you were up to it, you could absolutely cancel some streaming services and use Hoopla instead. And you can download or stream via Hoopla, so you can also take your loans on the road (not always possible with some streaming-only services.
Hoopla, along with Libby, is now in my regular reading app rotation. Time to catch up on all those comics I’ve heard of and never bothered to read!