King County Library System (KCLS) is named the leading U.S. library with 4.8 million digital checkouts in 2018 for the fifth year in a row by Rakuten OverDrive. Photo courtesy of KCLS Facebook.

King County Library System (KCLS) is named the leading U.S. library with 4.8 million digital checkouts in 2018 for the fifth year in a row by Rakuten OverDrive. Photo courtesy of KCLS Facebook.

King County Library System exceeds 1 million digital checkouts in 2018

KCLS leads the record for the fifth year in a row

King County Library System (KCLS) was named the leading library in the U.S. and number three worldwide for its eBook and audiobook downloads. KCLS had 4.8 million checkouts in 2018, a 23-percent increase from 2017.

KCLS executive director Lisa Rosenblum said the library system is honored to be recognized as the nation’s top digital-circulating library system.

“We are thrilled to see Rakuten OverDrive’s new digital circulation numbers, and thank our tech-savvy community for making KCLS the U.S. leader in digital downloads for the fifth consecutive year,” Rosenblum said. “We’ll continue to invest in our extensive online collection because we know our patrons clearly appreciate how easy and convenient eBooks and audiobooks are to access and enjoy.”

Rakuten OverDrive offers the largest digital content catalog in the world. It is the leading digital reading platform for 43,000 libraries and 76 schools worldwide.

According to Rakuten, 65 public library systems exceeded 1 million or more digital book loans in 2018. The amount of digital book loans is a milestone, as it’s the most loans ever. That serves to demonstrate how libraries have evolved by using digital lending of ebooks, audiobooks and magazines.

Rosenblum added that the greater Seattle area consistently ranks among the most well-read in America.

KCLS’ top five borrowed titles through the digital collection in 2018 included, “Origin” by Dan Brown, “The Rooster” Bar by John Grisham, “Little Fires Everywhere” by Celeste Ng, “The Midnight Line” by Lee Child, and “Wonder” by R. J. Palacio.