How can you find out what books are at your local public library?


Quick Answer

To find out what books are at your local public library, perform a search at your local library's website or your local library system's website. You also can search for books at WorldCat.org.

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How can you find out what books are at your local public library?
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Full Answer

If your local library or local library system is online, you can search for books by title, author, subject, keyword or tag from the privacy of your home. Each library's website contains information about the availability of books in its own inventory and those of sister libraries.

The New York Public Library is one example. At NYPL.org, you may search for titles by a number of criteria, check availability details, place a hold on a title, read reviews by book critics and other library patrons, and peruse recommendations.

WorldCat.org is an international library catalog that provides publication and availability information about books published throughout the world. When you search the WorldCat.org database, WorldCat.org automatically organizes your results according to the registered libraries that are closest to you geographically and potentially have copies on hand.

WorldCat.org only displays what is generally available at a given library, providing that the library routinely adds and updates its titles. To ascertain if a book is currently on the shelf at a particular library, you must consult that library's website. WorldCat.org provides links to libraries featured on its website.

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