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Tennessee R.E.A.D.S.
Frequently Asked Questions
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1.  What is the ‘Advantage’ program?

The Advantage program allows individual public libraries to purchase digital titles and have them available to their patrons through the R.E.A.D.S. site.  These titles can only be checked out by individuals with cards from the purchasing library and are not available to patrons with cards from other libraries.  Contact your public library to find out if they participate in the Advantage program. 

2.  Why don’t you have all the titles in a series?

We try to purchase all the titles in a series but sometimes we overlook one or two.  If you know of a missing title please use the ‘Additional Titles to Recommend’ feature on the Advanced Search page to find and recommend the title(s).  However not all titles in a series are available in the digital format, especially for older series.  Publishers are digitizing their backlist titles as quickly as possible but it may still be years before all older titles are available in the digital format.

3.  I have a problem using R.E.A.D.S.  Can someone call me and walk me through it?

Unfortunately we are not able to provide telephone support for R.E.A.D.S.  We do provide email support.  You can send an email to R.E.A.D.S. Support by clicking on the Help button on the R.E.A.D.S. site and scrolling to the bottom of the page.  Click on ‘Support’.  This will open the email program on your computer and allow you to send an email message to R.E.A.D.S. Support (  Please note that email support is available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (CST).  

4.  I’d like to make a donation to R.E.A.D.S.  How can I do that?

At this time it isn’t possible for R.E.A.D.S. to accept donations.  We encourage you to donate to your local public library, especially if they participate in the Advantage program.  Your contribution will make it possible for your local public library to increase their holdings of digital titles. 

5.  What is the web address for R.E.A.D.S.?

R.E.A.D.S. actually has two web addresses.  The basic address for the website is: (please note the address does not begin with ‘www’).  The web address for the R.E.A.D.S. children’s site is: 

We also have an address that re-directs you to the basic address.  The re-direct address is:  We have started using the re-direct address on our publicity (bookmarks, flyers, posters, etc.) so you may see this more often than the basic address.   

6.  How are R.E.A.D.S. and my public library connected?

R.E.A.D.S. is a service of the Tennessee Regional Library System (TRLS).  Your public library participates in the Regional System and its services, one of which is R.E.A.D.S.   The TRLS does not have authority over your public library but we work together to provide library services to the citizens in the 92 non-metropolitan counties.

The cities of Germantown, Arlington, Millington and Collegedale are not part of the TRLS but they contract with the State for the R.E.A.D.S. service. 

7.  How do I download an ebook/audiobook?

On the right hand side of the blue bar at the top of the R.E.A.D.S. site is a link to ‘Help’.  When you click this link it opens a page listing various types of Help resources.  Under OverDrive Help you will find extensive written explanations for various devices, formats, and common problems with downloading as well as short videos describing the search, checkout and download process.  Also on that page are links to a list of compatible devices, software downloads and Support.   

8.  Why are the hold lists so long?

Digital books are covered by copyright just like print books.  In order for two people to be able to check out an ebook or audiobook at the same time R.E.A.D.S. must purchase two ‘copies’, and three copies for three to be checked out and so on.  And just like your public library there is never enough money to meet the demand for popular titles.  The situation is complicated by the fact that some publishers charge libraries much more for digital copies than print copies.  For example, a public library will pay $15.00 for a print copy of Sycamore Row by John Grisham but R.E.A.D.S. must pay $85.00 for each ebook.  Due to budget restraints and the high cost of digital titles we are not able to purchase enough copies to meet the demand, resulting in long waiting lists for some titles. 

9.  How do I recommend the purchase of a particular title?

Sign into your R.E.A.D.S. account.  Go to the Advanced Search page.  Type in the title or author and click ‘Search’.  If the title or author you are looking for is not listed click the ‘Additional Titles to Recommend’ link located on the left-hand side of the page.  Search through the resulting list for the title you want R.E.A.D.S. to purchase.  If you find it click the ‘recommend’ button and follow the instructions that appear on the screen.  Your recommendation will then be sent to the committee that selects titles for R.E.A.D.S.

10.  I don’t find the title I am interested in even after searching ‘Additional Titles to Recommend’.  Can I recommend it anyway?

If you cannot find the title even after searching ‘Additional Titles to Recommend’ that means the book is not for sale to R.E.A.D.S.  Three of the major US publishers – Hachette, Macmillan and Simon & Schuster - will not sell their ebooks to library consortiums such as R.E.A.D.S., although they may be for sale to your public library through the Advantage Program.  For more information about these restrictions on public library purchase of ebooks check out this page from the American Library Association:

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