Free online ebook collection launches

More than 2,000 books available to all Minnesotans at no cost

EBooks Minnesota Screen shotEbooks Minnesota, a free online ebook collection spearheaded by Minitex — a joint program of the University of Minnesota Libraries and the Office of Higher Education — and the Minnesota Department of Education opens today to Minnesota readers.

The collection is accessible online at EbooksMN.org and via free apps from iTunes, Google Play, and Kindle. Ebooks Minnesota is open to all individuals and libraries within Minnesota’s borders.

Readers can access any book in the collection at any time, regardless of how many other readers are using the book. This feature makes the collection particularly useful for teachers looking to assign a single book to an entire class or even an entire school. Likewise, community book clubs can read books together without worrying about checkout limits or due dates.

Collection includes titles from Minnesota publishers

The collection contains more than 2,000 books, including titles from these Minnesota publishers:

  • University of Minnesota Press
  • ABDO
  • Lerner Publishing Group
  • Cherry Lake Publishing
  • Milkweed Press
  • Coffeehouse Press

Nonfiction titles from Arcadia Publishing about Minnesota and its history are also included in the collection, along with a selection of popular titles that are in the public domain, such as Dracula and Jane Eyre.

Two-year pilot project involves multiple units

Ebooks Minnesota is a two-year pilot project of Minitex and State Library Services, a division of the Minnesota Department of Education. The collection was made possible in part by funding from the Minnesota Department of Education through a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services and by Minitex.

“It’s exciting to be able to provide Minnesotans with access to books from such a wide range of Minnesota publishers through Ebooks Minnesota,” said Minnesota State Librarian Jennifer Nelson. “I’m especially hoping that the collection will provide hours of reading pleasure for people of all ages, and that the children’s titles will give students another resource to use as they complete school assignments and learn more about the world around them. Ebooks Minnesota is also a great way to showcase all of the great books being published by Minnesota’s independent presses.”

“We’re very pleased to be able to partner with the Minnesota Department of Education to make Ebooks Minnesota a reality,” added Valerie Horton, director of Minitex. “We believe by focusing on Minnesota’s many first-rate independent publishers, we are showcasing our state’s literary strength, connecting libraries and the business community, and providing quality ebooks to readers young and old.”

Project began as statewide collaboration

Ebooks Minnesota originated with the Explore Ebooks Minnesota project, a collaborative effort by library staff from across the state that explored the ways libraries could unite to improve electronic book experience for Minnesotans.

For more information about Ebooks Minnesota, please contact Zachariah Miller, Minitex, University of Minnesota Libraries, at zmiller@umn.edu or 612-301-6658. 

About Minitex

Minitex is a publicly supported network of academic, public, state government, and special libraries working cooperatively to improve library service for their users in Minnesota. Minitex is funded by the Minnesota Legislature through the Minnesota Office of Higher Education and is a joint program of the Office of Higher Education and the University of Minnesota Libraries. State Library Services, a unit of the Minnesota Department of Education, provides additional funding to support services for Minnesota libraries and library users.

About State Library Services

State Library Services, a division of the Minnesota Department of Education, provides leadership to Minnesota’s libraries. Division staff are consultants who help libraries to plan, develop and implement high-quality services that address community needs. State Library Services administers federal grants, state aid, and state grant programs that benefit all types of libraries.

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