Kindle Library Lending Endgame: Returning Your Books or Watching Them Expire

To complete the saga of my experience with Kindle Library Lending through Overdrive, the expiration date of my books arrived over the weekend. Helpfully, I received warning emails about all four books about three days in advance, each with an offer to buy the book included. More importantly, these tipped me off to the opportunity to quickly return them myself and check them out for another couple of weeks, assuming that no one had placed a hold on them.


To go ahead and return them early, I just went back to the Manage My Kindle page at Amazon, where, as we have said, all the action takes place for Kindle Library Lending. By clicking the little plus sign (+) next to the title, all the book information appeared in a drop-down, including the due date and an offer to buy the book. But clicking on the “Actions” button to the right offered me the option I was looking for: “Return this book,” right below an offer to buy the book. I clicked it, confirmed my intention to return the book, and returned to the e-book lending section of my local library site. There, I was able to check the book out again immediately (no holds!), and read on for a couple more weeks.

On my Kindle, each title I had returned now showed a [Loan Ended] notice before the title, and, where I had just checked the book out a second time, the title appeared again below, a completely “separate” copy, although one which retains my notes and marks from the earlier “borrow” (nice, huh?–and that would be true if I took the offer to buy the book and loaded back to the Kindle that way). Same treatment for the one book that I allowed to expire, about which I received a different email the next day, telling me that my loan had run its course and offering to let me buy the book.

Smooth as silk! Again, the Amazon system anticipates and addresses users’ needs–a positively “frictionless” experience.  And, just in case those of us who like to freeload and read books that we have not paid for by availing ourselves of the good offices of our local libraries–just in case, I say, that any of us should forget that these books are things that can be bought and paid for, well, every step of borrowing a book through Amazon and Overdrive via the library includes that all-important offer to buy the book.

  8 comments for “Kindle Library Lending Endgame: Returning Your Books or Watching Them Expire

  1. Katie
    October 13, 2011 at 9:39 pm

    What I’m wondering (I’m a week and a half into my own first library book experience) is if the book will remove itself from the device if I’m not hooked up wirelessly or otherwise. On an iPod, a borrowed audiobook won’t self-destruct because there’s no internet connection. If I keep my Kindle’s wireless turned off (I don’t have 3G), can I keep the book longer? Or is the due date embedded and I won’t have access after the due date?

  2. willd
    November 1, 2011 at 7:14 pm

    Great question! I don’t think that turning off the wifi will allow you to keep the book longer–but I could be wrong. Will get back when I know the answer!

  3. Katie
    November 2, 2011 at 12:03 pm

    Ok – I tried it. If I kept WiFi off (I don’t have 3G on my Kindle), I could keep the book forever! As soon as I connected, though, it was removed right away. And “keeping” the book a few days longer this way does not prevent the next person on the hold list from checking it out, the way that keeping a paper book does prevent anyone else from reading it.

  4. willd
    November 3, 2011 at 8:53 am

    Wow, super interesting experiment, Katie! I guess keeping the wifi off for a while is inconvenient but if you only have a few pages left to read…!

  5. MZ
    January 23, 2012 at 10:29 am

    I wish they’d allow Kindle Lending to international Kindle owners! :)

  6. January 23, 2012 at 10:43 am

    Can anyone tell me of their experience with Kindle-Select? I could delete the e-book purchase option from my website AND avoid publishing with B&N (nook), but I don’t want to come out in the negative. It’s bad enough we have to wait 60 days to get paid, but what do you experienced authors (w/Kindle Select) think? Is it worth the “sacrifices”?

    Thanks!

  7. John Holland
    September 5, 2012 at 9:35 pm

    I loaned a book to my wife and she returned it to me many months ago. My kindle shows the book still in lending status and I cannot access the book. When I connect to my computer and “Manage my Kindle” the book status shows that it is returned. HELP!!!!!!!!!

  8. willd
    September 22, 2012 at 11:59 am

    Hi John, sorry I didn’t see this post earlier. Have you resolved? Best, Will

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