Reference Librarians review and select materials for the Library guided by the Material Selection Policy of the library. These include books, magazines, newspapers, and encyclopedias in traditional print format, as well as a wide variety of resources in non-print formats. Electronic resources represent an expanding portion of our collection and are a vibrant part of our informational, instructional and entertainment offerings. Now, downloadable books, magazines and media, as well as online databases for e-research are at your fingertips.

Non-Print Collections and Downloadable Materials


Visit our Digital Collections page to access downloadable books, audiobooks, music, movies, and more!

Non-Print Collection:

Browse the library shelves or search our online catalog for an excellent selection of Audiobooks in disc/CD format and Music CDs representing many popular genres from Classical to Broadway to Hip Hop and beyond. Enjoy movies and television shows or a wide variety of informational and instructional titles on DVDs and Blu-rays. Books packaged with companion CD’s or DVD’s are scattered throughout our collections.

Video Games can be checked out by all WHPL adult patrons 18 years of age and older. Teens in grades 6-12 can borrow video games once their parent/guardian has filled out a permission slip. Only one (1) video game is allowed per family. To see what we have in our catalog, use the keyword search, combining “video game” with the type of game: PlayStation or Wii or Xbox and limit your search for “West Hempstead”.

Parents can check out a Playaway View or Launchpad, geared toward children in grades 5 and younger. Playaway Views are pre-loaded video players with topics ranging from popular television shows to curriculum support. Launchpads are pre-loaded tablets filled with educational games that don’t require an internet connection. Each device is checked out with a charging cable and have a universal audio jack for headphone use.


The West Hempstead Public Library purchases subscriptions to a wide variety of Databases for research, reference and recreational use in the Library, or remotely outside of the library. Use of the databases is free, but for remote access you must have a West Hempstead library card.

For instruction and assistance in using the databases call the Reference Desk at (516) 481-6591 ext 21.

 Books (Regular Print and Large-Print)


Circulating Collection:

All fiction books are arranged by the author’s last name. New books, both fiction and non-fiction, circulate for TWO weeks. Regular books circulate for FOUR weeks. All books may be requested/reserved through the online catalog. All non-fiction books for information and research needs are arranged by Dewey Decimal number (subject classification). Both new and older titles in the children’s collection circulate for 28 days.

Reference Collection:

Authoritative non-fiction books in print format are arranged by Dewey Decimal number and are restricted to in-library use. These are shelved near the Reference Desk. Many traditional print materials are being replaced by online (digital) versions.

Special Collections:

Special collections have been pulled from our regular stacks to make finding your favorites easier. Mystery, Science Fiction, and Large-Print books are separated from our regular fiction books. You can also find non-fiction literary critiques, ESL (English as a Second Language), Career, and High School Test Prep/College Entry all on the first floor.  High interest non-fiction books for tweens and teens can be found on display in the teen room; these books change as topics gain and lose popularity. Our children’s collections are sorted by type of book; speak to a children’s librarian to find the right book for your child.

 Magazines and Newspapers (Print and Digital)

magazine-autralia1 We provide local newspapers such as The West Hempstead/Malverne HeraldLong Island Newsday, and Daily News as well as major national newspapers such as the New York Times and Wall Street Journal. Magazines for adults are kept in the second floor reading area. Magazines for children and for teens are shelved in their respective departments. Print newspapers and the current issue of all magazines are for use in the Library only.

Library users have access to a wide variety of non-print magazines and newspapers in the Library and by remote access through library online Databases such as InfoTrac Newstand and Proquest.

Magazines at your fingertips! Learn more about our RBDigital App on our Digital Collections page.