OverDrive eBook and eAudiobook FAQ

OverDrive is a service offered by Fort Bend County Libraries that gives cardholders a selection of eBooks and eAudiobooks to borrow at no cost. Digital items return automatically and there are never any late fees.

Yes! Kindle eReader (for example, Paperwhite) owners will need to use OverDrive to download Kindle format eBooks.

  • A valid library card (with less than $5.00 in fines) and password (PIN).
  • Access to the Internet.
  • For downloads, the software (app) for your specific type of computer or mobile device. Users may find OverDrive's new Libby app simpler to use, but the original OverDrive app is also frequently updated and still available, and both are free to download. eBooks and eAudiobooks from OverDrive can also be used in your browser from the FBCL OverDrive webpage without the need to download them to a mobile device.
  • You may also need a valid email address in case you place an item on hold and want to be notified when your titles are available for checkout.

You can search for titles in the FBCL catalog and check them out from there, or you can search in the OverDrive's "OverDrive" app, Libby app, or OverDrive's website.

Open and log in to the app or the website, and navigate to your "bookshelf" or the "loans" section of your "My account." If you check out by using the library catalog, you will be directed to OverDrive's website or app to complete your borrow.

You can have 5 OverDrive items checked-out at one time.

eBooks and eAudiobooks borrowed from OverDrive return after 14 days. OverDrive offers the option to change the lending period to 7 days in the title detail before the borrow transaction is completed. All items return automatically, so there are never any late fees.

All items return automatically but if, for example, you have 5 items checked out and you want to return one so that you can check out a different fifth item, you have several choices.

A “return” or “check in” option is next to the title in your Library Catalog “My Account” Items Out tab and under the title on your OverDrive shelf (if the title has not yet been downloaded). If the item has been downloaded from OverDrive, you can use the return option associated with your device. See instructions in "OverDrive Help"(link not working) for returning and removing downloaded items under Categories - eBooks or Categories - Audiobooks.

OverDrive eBooks and eAudiobooks are licensed for use by one borrower at a time, so in some cases, users may have place a hold and wait for access to the most popular titles.

You can have 5 OverDrive items on hold at a time.

Items being held for you in OverDrive will wait 72 hours (3 days) for you to check them out before your held item is removed from your account. If you miss checking out that held item, you may check it out anyway if it is available or place it on hold again. OverDrive offers the option to automatically check out held items when they become available. Choose “Automatic Hold Checkout” in your My account settings in OverDrive.

You can either use “OverDrive Read” or “OverDrive Listen” to use your checked-out book without downloading, or follow the in-app instructions. Read more downloading instructions in "OverDrive Help" for downloading under Categories - eBooks or Categories - Audiobooks. Using OverDrive's new Libby app, borrowed items download to the app automatically.

Downloadable apps like Libby cannot be used on Kindle eReaders such as Paperwhite. In Libby, Kindle eReader users can click on Device Preferences under Settings to select “I read books on My Kindle,” which turns off auto download to Libby and allows OverDrive eBooks to be sent to a Kindle. Even after autodownload in Libby, you can click on the book title and select “Send to Device.” Select Kindle and Libby will take you to Amazon so that you can “Get Library Book” via your Amazon account.

During regular library business hours, please visit us or call 281-341-2605. To ask a question by email, contact library@fortbend.lib.tx.us. A librarian will reply to your email within two working days.

Click hereto be taken to OverDrive's Help page.