Every so often I have to put in a plug for the library. Where else can you get all this for free? If you aren't already using your library, what's your excuse?
I prefer to read e-books. More and more libraries are offering free e-book downloads, and they aren't just classics or terrible self-published books. Even Kindle users can read library books now!
I can never keep track of when things are due and always end up having to pay fines. Many libraries have it set up so you receive an email reminder when your books are coming due. Library Elf is another option. My low tech solution is to put my library receipt on the fridge door. That's one place I'm definitely going to look every day!
Library books are full of germs. I've always been a heavy user of library materials and have been working there for ten years now, and I haven't contracted any horrible diseases or gotten sick any more frequently than normal. If you are really worried about it, wipe down the book covers before you read them. I don't think people touch the pages too much.
I don't read. Libraries these days have more than just books, including large dvd collections and sometimes even video games. Long commute? How about an audio book to listen to in the car?
They never have the books I want. They very well might have exactly what you want, but it doesn't happen to be checked in or is at another branch. Find out about your library's hold policy.
In Not Buying It, Judith Levine suggests another solution to finding great stuff at your library: Adjust your expectations a little. You may not be able to cruise in and pick up the latest dvd releases or current best sellers, but what about all those books you meant to read someday and never did? Or how about staging a retrospective of a favorite actor's movies?
How about you? Do you use your local library? It might be worth checking out!