Welcome to the BorrowBooks service. Here, you can search the online catalogues and websites of Irish public libraries, and request books, CDs, DVDs etc. via Inter-Library Loan.

Please search your own local library first, and use the library's catalogue to reserve and request books locally. Only if you cannot get what you are looking for from your local library should you request an item using BorrowBooks.ie.

You may find reading the Guidelines useful before proceeding with your search.
LATEST NEWS
The BorrowBooks website has been visited 7 million times since its pilot phase in 2005...read more
Carlow, Cavan, Cork City and Kildare are not participating in BorrowBooks...read more
About BorrowBooks.ie
BorrowBooks.ie allows you to search across the Irish public libraries' online catalogues to locate and request an item which is not held in your own library service.

You are invited to search for a book, CD, DVD or etc. from the online catalogues of Irish public library authorities. If you locate the item in your own library service's catalogue, you can make an online request for the item to your library service. If you find it in another library service's catalogue, you can make a request to your own library service to obtain the item for you by completing the online booking form. The item will be delivered to your local branch and you will be notified once it has arrived. Please note that requests to other library services may take a little time to fulfil.

Your request will be sent directly to your library service and if you have queries relating to a request, you should contact your library service directly.

In order to place a request, you must be a member of an Irish public library service. If you are not currently a member of a public library, it's easy to join. Just contact your local branch to fill out an application form. To join you will need to present identification with proof of your current address. In some cases a small administration fee is applied. Young people will need to have the application signed by a parent or guardian.

BorrowBooks.ie is an initiative of the Irish public libraries, supported by The Local Government Management Agency and the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government

Contact
If you have query in relation to your BorrowBooks request or loans contact your local library service, click here for a list of library branches in your area.

To cancel a loan or to send a message to your librarian, please click here

For other queries please contact the BorrowBooks team or The Local Government Management Agency
Guidelines
These guidelines provide a quick guide and a step by step guide to locating an item and making a request through BorrowBooks.ie. You may also like to check the FAQs section for details on the service.

Quick Guide:

  • Enter your search terms in the search box on the homepage
  • Select the results from your chosen library service listing
  • Check the catalogue listing for your item
  • Fill in the BorrowBooks form
  • Click the send your request button to have your request processed
To send a message to your librarian (e.g. to cancel a request), click here

Step by Step Guide:

Step 1: Start your search
There are two search options located on the homepage - a quick keyword search and an advanced search option.

Step 2: Enter your search terms
Your search can be customised according to the search option you choose:

  1. The standard (keyword) search box on the homepage can be used for entering one or more keywords that could be either, author, title or keywords of both. Keywords will be searched through all the library services of BorrowBooks.
  2. The advanced search option can be selected from the homepage and provides extra options, i.e., author, title, keyword, search terms and the ability to choose specific library catalogues for your search.

The advanced search option can be customised by :
  1. The Search Type option allows you to choose whether to search library catalogues using Keyword (the default), Title or Author. Note that if searching by Author it's most effective to specify the surname first (e.g. "Joyce, James"
  2. Selecting the Select all button will select all of the checkboxes shown.
  3. Alternatively, if you want to search one or more catalogues in particular, you can mark just the check boxes of the library catalogues you wish to search. Having selected the libraries to search, now click the Search button. This brings you to the search results.

Step 3: Search Results
The search results appear in real time as the online catalogues are queried by the BorrowBooks.ie system and as they send back responses to the system. The BorrowBooks.ie system counts the 'hits' returned by each online library catalogue and presents them in a list. If the search website option is ticked, it also carries out a search of the website of each public library website and returns the number of hits from the website.

Some results will come back before others. Where the BorrowBooks.ie system cannot get a response from a particular catalogue, it may show that catalogue as 'down'. This does not mean, in all cases, that the online catalogue server is in fact out of service; it may be due to a network problem which slows down access to the particular server at that moment in time, or may be due to other external technical factors.

Step 4: Select a Catalogue
You can click on any of the search results. This will open the selected catalogue, as well as on online form which allows you to make a request. You are encouraged to request from your own local library where possible, before attempting an ILL request from a third party library.

Step 5: Make your Request
To make your request, first click on the catalogue link for the item you have requested and read the holding information for it to ensure that it is still available for loan. When you have chosen which copy of the item you wish to request from BorrowBooks, fill in the BorrowBooks request form on the top of the catalogue listing, using the information presented in the catalogue entry for that item.

Many of the form fields on the request form are mandatory; if you try to send a request without completing them, you will be prompted to complete them. Having completed the form, click the Send My Request button and the ILL request is now initiated. The request is sent to your own library service who will process it for you and keep you advised of progress.

To send a message to your librarian (e.g. to cancel a request), click here

FAQs
Facts about borrowbooks.ie

Why use borrowbooks.ie? BorrowBooks.ie allows you to search across the Irish public libraries online catalogues to locate and request an item which is not held in your own library service.

Who can use this service? Anyone who is a current member of any of the Irish public library authorities' services may make a request online straightaway. If you are not a member at the moment, contact your nearest library branch to join. Click here to find your nearest branch

What types of materials can / cannot be requested? A wide range of material can be requested, including non-book items. However in the case of DVDs and CDs please note that individual lending policies can vary.

What is the cost? Placing the request is free. The arrangements for your own library service will apply in processing the request. In some cases a small administration fee is applied.

How long does it take? A loan request between library services will take approximately two weeks, but individual loan times may vary. You will be notified in the event of a delay.

How many requests can be made? A limit of 5 active requests per user has been set. A request is regarded as active until you return the item to your local branch. Only one item should be entered per request form

How do I know when it's in? You will be contacted by your branch when the item is ready for collection.

Where do I collect it? Your loan item will be delivered to your local library branch for collection.

How do I cancel a request? Requests can be cancelled here by contacting your library service, who will process the cancellation on your behalf.

How long can I keep an ILL item? The loan period for your library service is the one which applies for your requests made through borrowbooks.ie.

Can I renew the loan period? You can request an extension of the loan from your library service. Agreement is then at the discretion of the lending library service.

What happens if I return an item after its due date? The fine system for your local library applies to items received via borrowbooks.ie.
LATEST NEWS
The BorrowBooks website has been visited 7 million times since its pilot phase in 2005
The service has grown rapidly from its first year of full initiation in 2006 when 10,895 requests were made with 6,795 satisfied to 2010 when 17,739 requests were made and 11,104 of these were satisfied through the service.
Carlow, Cavan, Cork City and Kildare are not participating in BorrowBooks
The library services in county Carlow,Cavan,Cork city and county Kildare are not participating in BorrowBooks until further notice.
BorrowBooks.ie is an initiative of the Irish public libraries, supported by The Local Government Management Agency and the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government
BorrowBooks.ie search page has been loaded 10427642 times since 25.11.2004
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