Help/FAQ

General questions

  • Using your Library Card and Pin, Black Country Customers can Log In into a secure eBook service and select up to five eBooks to download at any one time.
  • If you have forgotten or need a PIN please contact us or call into your local library
  • Logon to the Black Country eBook web site using your Library Card and Pin.
  • Select the title you wish to download by either browsing by 'Latest Arrivals' or by 'Genre', or by entering text into the search field.
  • Select by clicking on the title.
  • If the title is available and you wish to download it, click on 'Add to basket'. (If the title is out on loan you will be able to place a reservation).
  • This will take you to the Basket Items Screen.
  • You will notice that the title has been reserved for 30 Minutes to give you time to consider any other titles you may wish to download, up to a maximum of five.
  • When you are ready, click on the 'Checkout' button. The title will then be issued to you. At this point you can start the download process to your PC/MAC/Device.
  • Depending on the eBook Reader the system will either take you to the Adobe Digital Editions download manager and then onto your Adobe Digital Editions virtual bookshelf or to the eBook Reader software where the Reader's own software will manage the download, virtual bookshelf and syncing with the Reader. (Details on this will be available with your Reader or on the eBook Readers vendor's website).

An Adobe ID is required to authenticate your eReader for use with our service. When a title is downloaded, it is locked to your Adobe ID. This prevents unauthorised sharing of our titles. All your devices must be assigned the same Adobe ID for them to be able to read your loan titles.

If you do not have an Adobe ID, please create one via the Adobe web site.

For PC/MAC users and all readers listed below, eBooks are downloaded using the standard eBook software Adobe Digital Editions.

The first time you try to download an eBook you will be prompted to download and install Adobe Digital Editions if this software is not already on your PC/MAC.

http://www.adobe.com/products/digitaleditions/

The minimum system requirements for Adobe® Digital Editions are as follows.

PC
  • Microsoft® Windows® XP with Service Pack 2 (Service Pack 3 recommended) Windows Vista® (32-bit or 64-bit), Windows® 7 (32-bit or 64-bit)
  • Intel® Pentium® 500MHz processor
  • 128MB of RAM
  • 800x600 monitor resolution
MAC
  • Mac OS X v10.4.10 or v10.5
  • PowerPC® G4 or G5 500MHz processor
  • 128MB of RAM
INTEL
  • Mac OS X v10.4.10, v10.5 or v10.6
  • 500MHz processor
  • 128MB of RAM
BROWSER
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 8, Mozilla Firefox 3, Google Chrome for Windows
  • Adobe Flash® Player 9 or 10
  • Apple Safari 4, Mozilla Firefox 3

These specifications are provided by Adobe. Please visit http://www.adobe.com/products/digitaleditions/ if you have any queries regarding them.

The eBook is available for a loan period up to a maximum of 21 days at which point the eBook will expire and will no longer be readable on your PC or eBook reader. The eBook then becomes available for another user to download. If you are likely to read the book in less than 21 days, we advise selecting a shorter loan period before downloading. This will enable you to fully utilise your loan period.

No. If you have not finished with the eBook, you can download it again if there are no reservations attached to the eBook. If there are reservations then you will need to add your details to the reservation list and you will be notified when the eBook becomes available for you to loan.

Yes, the eBook service allows you to reserve an eBook which has already been downloaded. If you wish to include your email address with the reservation you will be alerted as soon as the title becomes available.

We allow three days for the eBook to be downloaded at which point the eBook is offered to the next reservation or returns to our eBook stock to be accessed by other users.

Amazon have strict controls over allowing 3rd party eBooks on their device and as such we are unable to offer any supported methods for reading library eBooks on an Amazon platform

In the unlikely event of a failed download or a PC/MAC or Reader malfunction an eBook can be downloaded from the Black Country eBook service from within your login via the 'Manage Loans/Reservations' screen, for the duration of the loan period.

Unfortunately, it is not possible to 'return' an eBook early once it is taken out on loan. Strict publishing agreements prevent us from reissuing a title before the expiration date on the downloaded book has passed. This is because we are unable to determine whether a 'returned' book still exists on any of your devices. Reissuing a title which still exists on a previous borrowers device would lead to us breaking our agreements with Publishers and could result in the Publisher removing their titles from our service.

Only a small percentage of printed physical books are available as an eBook. There are also some UK Publishers who do not allow their eBook titles to be loaned. The number of e-titles for loan is increasing all the time. Please check the Black Country eBook Service frequently for new titles added.

Visit the Adobe web site for the current list of devices compatible with Adobe Digital Editions. If your device is not listed then we suggest you contact your device manufacturer to check if your eReader supports Adobe DRM titles.

Our own free eBook eReader 'Libro eReader' is available on both iOS (Apple devices) and Android.

Yes, you are able to download directly to your iPhone or iPad.

In order to successfully download to your Apple device you must have our Libro eReader app installed. Once installed and configured with your Adobe ID you can access our catalogue directly from within the app.

Yes, you are able to download directly to your Android device.

In order to successfully download to your Android device you must have our Libro eReader app installed. Once installed and configured with your Adobe ID you can access our catalogue directly from within the app.

screen shot from an Android phone displaying the 'The XML file does not appear to have any style information associated with it' message
Your device is attempting to open the download file with the wrong software/app. You need to open the file with the correct app for your device (instructions for downloading to PC/Mac, Apple and Android are given earlier on this page).

If you are using an Android device, we suggest you install and access our service directly from our app, Libro. However, if you continue to use a 3rd party app then the following instructions will guide you through the process. The first time you attempted to open one of our download files from your browser, your device will have asked you which app to complete the action with. At this point, you should have selected your preinstalled eBook reading app i.e. Libro, VLe, Bluefire or Aldiko.

If you chose an unsupported app this will lead to the XML error message always occuring. In this case, please follow the instructions below to reset your preferences.

Step 1: On your device, go to settings -> Application Manager -> All.

screen shot from an Android phone displaying the Application manager
Step 2: Scroll down until you find the application that you use to browse the internet on your device. 'Tap' the application to bring up the settings screen.

screen shot from an Android phone displaying the Applicatin settings
Step 3: In the App info screen scroll down and press clear defaults (please note this will clear all launch by default settings)

screen shot from an Android phone displaying the 'Complete action using' dialog window
Step 4: Next time you try to download an eBook it then ask you to choose your eBook app. Select your compatible app followed by tapping the 'Always' button. This will trigger the downloading of the eBook with the selected app.


Only readers that support the use of Digital Rights Management (DRM) in either ePub or PDF format can view our eBooks. We have to implement this protection method as part of our licensing agreement with publishers. Failure to use DRM would result in the titles being removed from our offering. Please check your readers guide to see whether it supports these formats or visit Adobe Digital Editions website.

The eBook library model works in the same way as the library loans model. A book, regardless of its format, can only be borrowed by one user at any one time. However, we keep a close eye on waiting lists and will try to respond to demand by purchasing additional copies wherever possible, although this can never be guaranteed because of budget restrictions.

Please refer to your eReader's user guidelines.

Yes, you can access the service with a valid library card and Pin from anywhere in the world.

Please use our contact page for any queries you have regarding the usage of our web site. For any queries regarding your computer or eBook Reader, please contact your manufacturer's technical support.