New online catalogue available at library

Picton Branch of the Prince Edward County Public Library. (Desirée Decoste/Gazette Staff)

If you have ever searched for books at the library or renewed your checkouts online, you have used the library’s online catalogue.

We’re excited to announce that a new and improved online catalogue is now available at peclibrary.org. In many ways it functions just as you are used to – you can search for a book, place a request for it, and renew books you have out. However, the new catalogue is also packed with features to make it easier for you to find something good to read (or watch, as there are also DVDs available in the catalogue). Aaron Nash has been managing the project and, as explained, there are a number of useful search tips you can try. “There’s a new feature called smart search which makes the search feature much more like what you are used to with Amazon or Google. Try searching ‘new kids board books,’ for example, to see board books which have been added recently.”

Another feature that we are excited about is the ability to make lists of books! For example, last summer we put together a list of anti-racism reads which was available on the library blog, but we will now be able to make these lists available directly in the catalogue. From there you can place holds on any titles that interest you. Library users are also able to make their own lists which can be shared with other libraries all over North America. We’re excited to expand our ability to advise readers using these lists!

When you use the catalogue for the first time you will need to use your library card number and PIN to set up a username. Registration is a one-time process that allows you to create an easy-to-remember login name (username) that you can use instead of your barcode to check your account. Registration is required to take advantage of all of the features of the site, including the ability to manage your renewals and holds, contributing ratings and reviews, and follow others to see what they’re enjoying. Remember that the public comments which you post will include your username. While this catalogue is in it’s early stages we cannot yet make ebooks available through the catalogue. That feature is expected early 2022. In the meantime, you can use the standalone apps for Libby, Hoopla and Kanopy to access those titles.

If you have always used the catalogue to access ebooks and now need a primer on the use of the apps, please call (613) 476-5962 or email techhelp@peclibrary.org and we’ll book a one-on-one help session to get you started. If you have any comments or feedback on the new catalogue, you’ll see a “provide feedback” button and Aaron encourages you to share any comments or suggestions.

If you find something less than user friendly, you won’t be the only one, and it’s helpful for Aaron to know what can be improved upon. You can also reach him directly at (613) 476-4130 or by email anash@peclibrary.org.

-Liz Zylstra