The Chula Vista Public Library is proud to announce a new service, Enki, which promises to expand public access to eBooks and provide local residents with a free pass to download over 50,000 books.
Enki, an eBook platform created by libraries for libraries, is named after the Sumerian God of mischief, intelligence and creativity. The name is apropos; the platform was founded by Califa, a non-profit library cooperative, and the Contra Costa County Library to upend the public eBook environment and create a unique place for literary discovery.
Any library card holder can now log onto enkilibrary.org, browse its massive collection and access exclusive books only available on the platform. In addition to thousands of popular eBooks ranging from modern non-fiction hit 1000 Places to See Before You Die to the classic novel 1984, Enki also hosts local indie writers and unpublished works from bestselling authors.
We’re very excited to see Enki join our collection. In addition to expanding the number of popular titles, we’re also adding many exciting new indie titles that are gaining popularity. This is a true public service that will help budding local authors find an audience.
Behind the scenes, Enki is transforming the eBook industry one library system at a time. Other eBook platforms are owned and operated by corporations that mediate between libraries and publishers. These companies require libraries to invest thousands of dollars into software and then charge exorbitant rates to lease books with complex and unpredictable terms. These books, if in printed form, would usually be purchased outright at market rates.
Enki cuts out these middlemen by providing a free, open-source eBook platform that comes with discount access to a statewide collection of eBooks. Individual libraries can then purchase their own copies of eBooks directly from publishers, preventing libraries, authors and publishers alike from losing money in the transaction. No other eBook platform offers this arrangement.
Enki currently offers access to eBooks in PDF and EPUB formats from publishers including Kensington, Workman, McGraw-Hill, Smashwords, Akashic, Independent Publishers Group, F+W Media, Britannica and nearly fifty others. Funding for enki Library is through a Bay Area Library Information Systems (BALIS) Innovation Grant, Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) monies from the California State Library, and the State Library of Kansas and Califa.