Informational Alert | Coronavirus Updates

Contactless pickup of library holds available during modified hours at Main, Central Square, O’Neill and Valente. No appointment required. Request items from our online catalog. For assistance, call 617-349-4040 or email

Books to Go

A new way to borrow physical library books for kids, teens, and adults during COVID-19. 

How It Works

  • Check the Library Calendar of Events to find a Books to Go pop-up event near you.
  • At the event, choose from our table of bags. We will have everything from picture books for young children to YA fiction and graphic novels for teens and fiction for adults. 
  • Title selections will be curated by Cambridge Public Library librarians. 
  • Enjoy your library books at home!
  • When you are done, return your books to the Library so other patrons may enjoy them.


Keeping You Safe

Borrowing a bag of library books at a Books to Go event is a contactless procedure. Please wear a face covering and maintain 6 feet of distance between yourself, Library staff and other patrons.


Frequently Asked Questions

What types of books will be available?

We’ll be offering bags of all types of library books, from picture books to graphic novels to non-fiction to cookbooks. 

Can I pick up a specific title through Books to Go?

For a specific request, please try our Contactless Holds Pickup service. To help us serve as many households as possible, we’re offering bags of books pre-selected by our librarians at Books to Go events.

How many books can I pick up at the event?

Each bag will contain 3-5 library books. We’re happy to offer one bag for each reader in your household.

What if I can’t find my library card?

We hope you will still pick up a bag of books! In order to make this a contactless pickup, we are checking out these books to our library cards, not yours. We trust you to bring them back when you are done.

I’m going to miss the Books to Go pop-up event in my neighborhood. Will you be offering this service again?

We are piloting this service with events at the Boudreau and Collins Branches. We will make plans for additional events after we see how the first series goes. 

How can I return the books that I pick up?

The Main Library outside book drop is open 24/7. Check the library website for book drop hours at all other branches.