Can't find it?

Can't Find It - what to do next to find the item you are looking for.

So, you've scoured the library catalogue and you can't find what you are looking for. What do you do next?

There are three main possibilities:

  • Suggest the Unley Libraries purchase the item - this is good for recent and new releases.
  • Interlibrary loan - perhaps it can be sourced somewhere outside the Libraries SA network?
  • Purchase - this is outside our services, but we do have a few suggestions.


Suggest a purchase

The Libraries are continually purchasing new items. Using this form you can suggest a particular item you would like us to purchase. Please make sure you have fully searched for the item on our catalogue. If you need assistance with this form, please ask a staff member to help you.

If a title is purchased, it will be placed on hold for you. If we are unable to purchase the item, a message will be left on your card.

Please note: we cannot accept requests for items with an unknown release date, or a release date greater than three months away. This includes DVDs/Blu-rays where the film is still currently in cinemas.

Interlibrary loans

If an item cannot be found within the LibrariesSA network, the State Library of South Australia is a valuable resource.

State Library of South Australia

The State Library of SA is a reference only library, therefore does not allow lending of its items. However, we can request some items to be sent to our Libraries where you can view the item within our buildings. State Library items can not be taken home.

Some State Library items have additional restrictions, are only for viewing at the State Library and are not available for interlibrary loan. Further information can be found on the State Library website.

To place a request for an interlibrary loan from the State Library of South Australia:

  • Speak to a staff member at any of our libraries either in person or over the phone and we will submit the request on your behalf.
  • We will notify you when the item arrives at our Libraries. Delivery times can vary from a couple of days to a couple of weeks.
  • Usually the item can be held up to a month, with extensions available subject to approval from the State Library.
  • The item is be viewed within our libraries only and cannot be taken home.
  • Interlibrary loans from the State Library of South Australia are free.

University, specialty & interstate libraries

We highly recommend searching the Trove website provided by the National Library of Australia (NLA). This is a wonderful resource showing items held by the NLA, university libraries and other speciality libraries around Australia. 

If you are interested in Interlibrary loaning an item or journal article from one of these specialised libraries, please refer to the State Library of SA and they may be able to help you with your enquiry.  

There are specific conditions and fees involved; please visit their website for further information

Once you have found what you are looking for, you can submit your request via their online form.

Purchase an item

If the library networks are unable to provide the item you are looking for, there are some specialty booksellers that may be worth a look.

Trove sometimes provides a link to a bookseller holding an item. Search for the item and open its record. You are looking for a 'Buy' tab. Not all books will have a 'buy' tab, but it is worth a look. In that tab, Trove will give you some suggestions of booksellers who might be able to source the item.

Booko is a great resource for books and DVDs, both new and secondhand.