How to manage a reading list for multiple libraries?
January 27, 2020 12:54 PM   Subscribe

I have Overdrive from 3 libraries, Hoopla Digital from 2 libraries, and I guess I could have Libby from them as well if I wanted. I'm tired of checking all of these places for books, audiobooks, and comics. I also don't like that my wish list basically lives in one library and not the others. Is there a way to better manage all of this? A for books?

I guess I could move my wish list into Goodreads or Amazon, but that's just a other place to look for my list since as far as I can tell they don't integrate with any library apps or sites. Any suggestions for simplifying are welcome.
posted by Tehhund to Computers & Internet (11 answers total) 18 users marked this as a favorite
I'm not sure if what you're looking for actually exists, but you might get halfway there via Worldcat, which allows you to search for books all over the world (or, signed in, books that are available at specific libraries, e.g. ebooks available for the Kindle on the five libraries across the country that you have cards to, or in hardback at three libraries in your local area, etc).

I don't know if it has a listmaking function, alas.
posted by tapir-whorf at 1:07 PM on January 27 [1 favorite]

It sounds like you want Library Extension? It's a browser extension that will put a little widget whenever you are browsing amazon or goodreads and show you the availability at your libraries. I use it all the time and am signed into it with my two local libraries - it can show availability for e-books and regular books.
posted by cpatterson at 1:26 PM on January 27 [13 favorites]

I should say, Library Extension isn't a list-making app I don't think - I use Goodreads for my wish list for books, but then whenever I visit my list on GR and click on a book's listing, Library Extension tells me whether it's in my local library's catalogue.
posted by cpatterson at 1:28 PM on January 27 [3 favorites]

I use Library Extension and Goodreads, and it's THE BEST. I keep my list in Goodreads (though it works in Amazon, too, if you prefer that), and whenever I go to a book on that site, it automatically tells me which of the libraries I've chosen (I have two physical libraries and eight overdrives) own the book and which have it available to check out now.

It's not perfect--it can't, for example, give you a list of books that are available now at any of your libraries, or tell you what's available now by a certain author. But the tool it does provide is a sheer delight to me.
posted by gideonfrog at 1:44 PM on January 27 [2 favorites]

Library extension AND Goodreads!
posted by aetg at 2:07 PM on January 27 [2 favorites]

You can at least simplify searches using your various Overdrive accounts at different libraries by going to and setting up an account there. You can plug in all the libraries from which you use Overdrive and then search all of those libraries at once.

This doesn't solve everything but it may at least cut down some of the "visiting 5 different library websites every time you want a single book" faff.
posted by darchildre at 2:26 PM on January 27 [1 favorite]

I use Library Extension with Goodreads and have several custom lists for where a particular book is available to manage this. As an aside, Libby is just a different skin for Overdrive and has the same books available so you don't need to worry about that.
posted by daysocks at 2:49 PM on January 27 [1 favorite]

Here's what Goodreads + Library extension looks like with multiple libraries (library locations blacked out). I use Goodreads to make my lists, and then any time I want to check out a book, going to its page automatically shows me the availability at all the libraries I've connected it to. Clicking 'borrow' (or 'view' if there's no copies available in that format) will take you to the library's page for the physical book or the Overdrive page. You can check here to see if your libraries (and their digital archives) are supported.

The only downside is you can't look at your whole to-read list and see which library each book is at on one page (you have to go to each book individually), but if you're mostly doing digital, that's probably not a problem. I only ever want that feature when I'm going to one of the more out of the way libraries and want to check out several books at once.
posted by brook horse at 4:18 PM on January 27 [1 favorite]

I also use Goodreads plus an extension for this—but Available Goodreads. It works on bookshelf pages, not just individual book pages, so your can see the availability of everything on your to-read list at the same time.
posted by cellar door at 5:07 PM on January 27 [4 favorites]

Those extensions make Goodreads worth it. I prefer the way Available Reads shows up in the list of books, and it works on mobile (Firefox on Android). But Library includes Hoopla, which I use a lot.
posted by Tehhund at 7:31 PM on January 27

Update: I have both the Library Extension and Available Reads extension installed on desktop and Android Firefox, and they both work great. Setting up the Library Extension on mobile was a little wonky but I just had to let it download some data before going to the setup page and everything works now. They work on different pages of Goodreads and they don't conflict with each other, so I'm finding them to be complimentary. Installing both of them and using Goodreads as my reading list has pretty much solved my multi-library organization issue.
posted by Tehhund at 8:11 AM on February 21

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