Frequently Asked Questions
  1. What is BookSG?

    BookSG is a collection of books and other printed material digitized from the collections of the National Library of Singapore, complemented by selected works from the British Library's Oriental & India Office Collection. These material present a valuable resource on Singapore’s history and culture.

    The items in this online collection have been digitized by the National Library as part of an endeavor to preserve and provide better access to resources located within the library to enable users to explore and discover these resources.


  2. How do I search the collection?

    You can search for works relevant to your area of research by entering your search terms in the search box, which will locate works that contain information specified in the search - such as certain words in the document title or text or an author's name. From the search results, click on the document title to view the document.

    You can also browse the titles in the collection by clicking on the subject categories or the alphabetical listing.

    In addition, the website provides you the option to search for photographs and illustrations found within the digitised books. To limit the search to photographs and illustrations, click on the option "Illustrations" below the search box.


  3. Why are some titles available as limited preview only?

    These are publications acquired under Legal Deposit. As these publications are still under copyright, the fulltext of these publications are available for viewing within library premises only.

    However, a limited number of pages are available for viewing online, as a preview to the rest of the book. You can preview auto-selected 10% of the content from these titles. You can also view thumbnail images of illustrations found in these titles. This will help you determine whether a particular title is useful for your research.


  4. How can I view the full document of titles with limited preview?

    The full documents are available onsite within NLB libraries. To find out where the titles are available, click on the link "Click here for details".

    Please note that reservation is required for books from the Repository Used Book Collection. The Repository Used Books Collection includes both non-reference and reference books. If the title is a non-reference item, it can be reserved at a charge of $1.55 per item for a loan period of 21 days. Reservation can be made online via the Catalogue at Customers can also specify which branch the book can be collected from.

    Reference books from the Repository Used Reference Books Collection can also be reserved but only via the libraries' Customer Service Counters (except at DIY library, namely Sengkang Public Libary). However, library members need to collect and refer to them onsite at Lee Kong Chian Reference Library or the regional libraries (Woodlands, Jurong, Tampines) for 3 weeks only. Reservation fee of $1.55 per item applies.


  5. Any feedback or question?

    If you have any feedback or question about BookSG, please forward it to, or submit your feedback/question via our online enquiry form Reference Point.