Multnomah County Library
The library is the best bet, of course, for books. Hanna writes: "I'm a total library user..." use the online catalog to reserve books, "and have them send the books to your branch". (sorry, telnet geeks: fastcat has been phased out with the new [fall 2005] library catalog software). They will even deliver them to your home (but then you are moving out of the cheapest category). Maybe they don't have that cutting edge piercing book you've been drooling over, but it may well be there next week.
Their periodicals section is pretty extensive, though you may have to wait for popular magazines, and while you can frequently take home back issues, many magazines seem to have no back issues at all. But they do have a photocopier.
Posted at November 05, 2006 * add entry to del.icio.us