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Book catalog: Home

Finding Books

The book catalog identifies books from both our local collection and the state-wide I-Share consortium.

                     Short videos: How to search the book catalog. How to renew books.


NOTE: Consider supplementing your catalog search with the Central Index which provides over a million additional free ebooks from the HathiTrust public domain ebooks plus a small number of other ebooks.  After your results appear, select "Books" under the Resource Type category on the left to limit to our full text book material.  (Short video of how to search the Central Index.)  See a page of details about the Central Index.

Fulltext Electronic Book Resources to Support Distance Learning

Our Purchased  Ebooks:


Search the FULLTEXT of our ebooks simultaneously across multiple platforms.

The Central Index provides searching across many of our ebook platforms ... EBSCOhost ebooks, EBL ebooks, ProQuest ebooks, American Dissertation Database fulltext materials ... and includes our local SXU ebook purchases. This index includes the Hathi Trust (Google Books) public domain material.

  • After your results appear, select "Books" under the Resource Type category on the left to limit to our full text materials.
  • Use the Collection facet near the bottom of the left column to narrow your results to a specific e-book platform
The Central Index will perform full-text searching into thousands of recently published books. Once you have identified important titles, limit the search to "Books" and "Available Online" in the left column. If not available online within CARLI, run author/title searches in the other tools above. Especially the Pandemic tools and the WorldCat database which will allow one to place a Borrow From Another Library option if we do not have a copy within our consortium.


As a supplement to these ebooks, the following direct search options allow for searching fulltext words within millions of ebooks, a far more powerful and precise search option than searching just the author/title/subject keywords through our catalogs. Some items are freely available as public domain titles (creative commons, out of copyright, and/or government documents), while access to other items will require the purchase or borrowing from cooperating libraries.

HathiTrust maintains HathiTrust Digital Library. Since 13 October 2008, it preserves and provides access to material scanned by Google, some of the Internet Archive books, and some scanned locally by partner institutions. As of May 2010, it includes about 6 million volumes, over 1 million of which are public domain (at least in the US).

The Digital Library collection is found within the Internet Archive, which digitizes music, videos, and TV News, The database grows by over 1000 books a day, as well as mirrors books from Google Books and other sources. As of July 2014, it hosted over 8 million public domain books, which is far greater than the approximate 1 million public domain books at Google Books.

Another private listing of free online books is The Online Books Page an index that includes more than 2 million works in various formats, and can be searched by Author/Title and can be browsed by subject.

Google Books: Over a million "public domain" books from within this resource may be read online and are included in our library catalog. Many other books are searchable via Google Books, but only snippets may be viewed online ... one must use our regular book catalogs and perhaps ILL to obtain paper copies. This option allows for searching fulltext words within the books, a far more powerful and precise search option than just the author/title/subject keywords found using our catalogs.

Project Gutenberg: The Project Gutenberg initiative has hand-typed thousands of public domain books and speeches, and there may be many editions of classic materials. 


One additional free search tool to consider is Summon (from Princeton). You will see information within books and other materials...but you will not have links to the full text materials.

DOAB - Directory of Open Access Books searches over 12,000 open access books.

Pandemic Resources

Below are some additional full text book catalogs that are temporarily open to all researchers during the COVID-19 disruption. These tools provide even greater support for remote learning during our transition of course support to a primarily online mode.


Large Free Ebook Library:

The Internet Archive maintains the National Emergency Library, a digitized collection of over 1.4 million older books that includes a strong high school academy collection and a strong liberal arts college collection. After creating an account, one individual from an institution can read a digitized copy of a physical book already owned by their institutional library. 


HathiTrust Emergency Temporary Access Service: 

Students, faculty, and staff will, upon logging in to HathiTrust, have access to copyrighted titles that the library owns and for which we have been able to identify a match through our ongoing holdings analysis. Users will be able to read the book online, in the web browser, but will not be able to download the work in full. 

ADDITIONAL PANDEMIC INFO: See our Pandemic page.

Ebook features and options

Electronic books provide a variety of options, some familiar from paper books, and others unique to the electronic format.

Some options exist for all versions of ebooks - while some options only exist when you are using an online version (as opposed to downloading to a reader or workstation).


Enhanced options (using either downloaded or online access):

  •       Keyword searching,
  •       Highlighting, annotation, and bookmarking,
  •       Image expansion and manipulation,
  •       Sound and animation playback,
  •       Sharing with others.


Enhanced navigation options (when using online, NOT after downloading):

  •       Link to definitions of key words,
  •       Link to other works by the author,
  •       Link to related books by subject terms and categories,
  •       Link to other images of terms in the work,
  •       Highlight, annotate, and bookmark for later use,
  •       Copy-and-paste (but avoid plagiarism)


Controlled Digital Lending -- an emerging method that allows libraries to loan print books to digital patrons in a “lend like print” fashion. Through CDL, libraries use technical controls to ensure a consistent “owned-to-loaned” ratio, meaning the library circulates the exact number of copies of a specific title it owns, regardless of format, putting controls in place to prevent users from redistributing or copying the digitized version.

Dowloading ebooks

Electronic books can read read online or can be downloaded to local devices. Reading ebooks online provides readers with more powerful connections and links to related resources. Downloading makes reading possible when off-line. Both options allow for highlighting, printing, and bookmarking.

If you intend to download portions of ebooks you will need to have the appropriate software, which may differ depending upon the ebook platform. The instructions below should assist most readers in obtaining the basic software required.


1.  If you will be downloading an eBook, create an Adobe ID.  The programs required to read most of our eBooks will require you to connect an Adobe ID account before you can download anything.

2.  Download an appropriate reader program.  For PC or Mac, you will want Adobe Digital Editions.  This program is similar to Adobe Reader, with the addition of Digital Rights Management.  If you are using an iOS or Android device, try Bluefire eReader.  There are a number of other free ePub readers for Android as well, and ebrary has published an app for reading their ebooks.

3.  Search for an ebook, check it out, or download it.  Depending on the device, you can download directly, or download to your computer and transfer it to your device.

See the free materials found in the Bookshare catalog (for alternative formats).

Audio Books

LibriVox audiobooks are free for anyone to listen to, on their computers, iPods or other mobile device, or to burn onto a CD.

LibriVox volunteers record chapters of books in the public domain, and then we release the audio files back onto the net for free. All audio is in the public domain, so you may use it for whatever purpose you wish. Most of the texts are from Project Gutenberg, and the Internet Archive hosts the audio files (for free!).

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