App helps continue a lifelong love of reading
William ‘Gerry’ Raymond has been an avid reader all his life – and has been a regular at Beenleigh library for more than 30 years.
Now, he’s grateful to staff at the library for helping him rediscover reading after he thought it was lost to him forever by showing him the Libby app.
The 88-year-old first fell in love with reading during his university days and was always found with a book in his hand – until his failing eyesight meant even large print books were hard to read.
‘I am blind in one eye and my eyesight in the other is failing so it was impossible to read normal books,’ he says.
He stopped reading for a long time – more than a year.
Then he spoke with Beenleigh Library assistant Kristina, who told him to give the mobile reading app Libby a try. The free app is loved by millions of readers worldwide. Kristina helped Gerry to download the app and discover all the wonderful features.
The backlit text was helpful for his vision and meant he could read, and he could also access audiobooks from the app.
‘I had audio books on my computer but having them on my phone makes it so much easier – I can be anywhere and listen,’ he says.
‘The best thing was reading though – I was so delighted to be able to actually read again that I went through about 3 books in the first week!’
The books he chose weren’t light, easy reading either – Stephen King’s The Stand was one of the first Gerry dived into.
‘I think there are a lot of people my age who don’t know about things like Libby which make it so much easier to read on a mobile device,’ he says.
‘It is really easy to use as well.’
Kristina says she hopes lots of other readers will give Libby a go, and ask library staff for help if they need to.
‘You can borrow books and read them on your mobile and if it means people are able to read again and not lose that – that’s fantastic,’ she says.
Find out more about the Libby app by OverDrive here: OverDrive – Logan City Council Libraries (loganlibraries.org)