With Freading, Huntsville-Madison Public Library card holders can download books from the dozens of internationally known publishers supplying some or all of their catalogs, including Sterling, Sourcebooks, Workman and Kensington at no charge! With 5 tokens a week (each title is a set amount of tokens) you can download titles for 2 weeks, and you'll only need a library card number and PIN to get started.
New titles are added each week, with categories including fiction, biography, medical, self-help, children's, and much more. Access is limited to residents of Huntsville and Madison County.
How do I log in to Freading?
To access Freading, click the "My Digital Library" link at the top of any page on hmcpl.org.
In the middle of this page is a place to verify your library card number and PIN.
Until you're logged in, the link for logging in to Freegal will be greyed out, with a "Log in to access" banner over it.
After you've logged in, the link will be active and the banner will disappear.
What's my library card number?
It's the 14-digit number on your library card. It starts with 2156200.
What's my PIN?
If you never set a unique PIN number or you've forgotten it, please visit one of our branches for assistance. For security reasons we cannot issue PINs over the phone or via email.
How does Freading work?
Each week you are given 5 tokens. Tokens are a virtual currency that you redeem for ebook loans. A token number is located in the upper right corner of Freading displaying your weekly allotment. For instance, "4/5" means that you have a weekly limit of 5 tokens, and you have used 4 of those tokens. Each Monday your token allotment is reset to 5.
The amount of tokens required to download a book is on the left corner of the book display on the site.
There are three different token costs of a book, downloads cost 4, 2 or 1 token depending on the value assigned by the publisher. In most cases newly published books are 4 tokens, then after a time period they drop to 2, and then after another time period they drop to 1. So in general, the token value is based on how new a book is. In some cases though, a publisher may have chosen a different criteria such as popularity.
Unused tokens roll over each week for a four week period, a week being defined as a Monday to Sunday period of seven days, beginning at 12:01AM Monday, New York time, and going to midnight on Sunday. At the end of the fourth week from the time you first logged in, unused tokens are cleaned out of your account, except for your original weekly allotment. The rolling over process then starts all over again, as a new four week cycle has begun. Your subscribing library decides the amount of tokens that users will have in their weekly allotment.
How do I download a book?
You need to decide on what device that you will read the eBooks. The most popular devices that are compatible with Freading eBooks are:
- Any computer or laptop running a Windows or Mac platform with at least a modest hard drive, some free RAM, and a browser that has been updated in the past year or two. Major browsers such as IE, Safari, Firefox, and Chrome will show the site just fine.
- The nook family of devices from Barnes & Noble. We have specifically tested the nook Color and the Simple Touch Reader. The nook devices are not compatible with direct wireless downloading of Freading eBooks, but they accept transfers from your PC or Mac through a simple process.
- The Apple iPad and iPhone. The Freading eBook service has a free application in the Apple App Store which you can download. You must use the general browser to access your library's Freading site, then you download the eBook into the application. Direct downloading from within the application is not possible.
- Most Android based tablets and phones. We say "most" because some devices are Android based, but do not allow access to the full Android App Market, but a subset of that store. The Freading eBook Service has a free application in the Android app Market, and tablets that allow you to download the app include tablets from Motorola, Sony, Samsung and Acer, among others. Downloading is possible from within the Freading Android App.
- The Kobo Ereader and Vox tablet. The Freading App is in the Getjar App store.
- The Kindle Fire, but not other Kindle Devices. The Kindle Fire accepts 3rd party apps through a few extra steps as indicated below.
All mobile device users will need an Adobe ID in order to activate their Freading app for use. If users do not already have an Adobe ID, they can create an ID by visiting the Adobe website.
eReader users (Nook, Sony Reader, Kobo) will also need an Adobe ID in order to utilize the Adobe Digital Editions software on their PC. Adobe Digital Editions is a software program similar to iTunes in that it manages downloads and stores the eBooks on your PC. The Freading eBook site can tell you whether the Adobe Digital Editions software is on your computer. You can follow the link on the Freading homepage to download the Adobe Digital Editions software for free.
If the eReading device is not compatible with the Freading app (Nook, Sony Reader, Kobo), then the eBooks will need to be transferred from their PC to their eReader through the Adobe Digital Editions software.
What are your apps?
Our apps can be downloaded in the Apple App Store, the Android Marketplace, or at www.freading.com. Some libraries may have a link to the apps on their website. When in the Apple App Store or the Android Marketplace it may help to search for "Freading" and "Library Ideas."
What devices work with the Freading eBook service?
While not a complete list, here are some of the most popular devices that work with the service:
- For direct downloading off the site you can use a PC or Mac. With our app, you can use the iPhone or iPad. With our app, you can use most Android tablets and phones. Tablets we have tested include Samsung Galaxy, Sony, Toshiba, Acer, Asus and Xoom.
- For transfer of an eBook via a computer and Adobe Digital Editions, you can use the Nook devices, the Sony reader and the Kobo reader. We suspect there are more compatible ereaders.
- Freading eBooks are available via the Kindle Fire by a special procedure, but not other Kindles.
- At the moment, Freading eBooks are only viewable on Nook tablets via transfer.
How do I get the Freading app on Kindle Fire?
You may access the Freading app on the Kindle Fire through GetJar or slideMe.
For GetJar, make sure you have enabled "Download from unknown sources" and also make sure you have set the browser to optimize for mobile view. To do this on the NEW Kindle Fires, open the browser, tap the menu button at the bottom, select Settings, and set "Requested website view" to Mobile. Then re-load the GetJar website, and search for Freading. When you try to download it, check the status bar to see if there has been a download. If there has, tap it, and install. At this point, you should have the GetJar app installed. Open this, and search again for Freading. This should allow you to download Freading ebooks into the app. Again, you'll have to check the status bar for a download.
If NONE of that works, go to the site SlideMe.org and search for Freading. You should be able to install from here without the hassle of GetJar.
For how long do I have the eBook?
The Adobe Digital Editions software will limit your access to each ebook for a 2 week initial period. You can extend the loan period for one 2 week period by going back to the book display on the website and hitting the download button again. You will see that the token value has decreased since the initial loan. Most renewals are free.
Can I renew a book?
A book can be renewed for one 2 week period by going back to the book display on the website and hitting the download button again. You will see that the token value has decreased since the initial loan. Most renewals are free.
What is a wishlist?
The wishlist enables you to put books on "hold" if you have tokens but the library has run out of available downloads. It is not enabled for holds if you have insufficient tokens.
Need technical help?
If you're having difficulties logging in with your library card number and PIN, please visit the MyAccount Help page at http://hmcpl.org/myaccount/help for tips and suggestions. If you are already logged in but are having trouble searching for an artist or downloading an eBook, please visit the Freading FAQ section at hmcpl.freading.com/questions/index for more help.