Is there anything nicer than a new book? It’s pristine cover? It’s delicious paper and ink smell? The world inside it waiting to be discovered?
As it turns out, there is something better. A free new book.
Whether you’re looking for free Kindle ebooks or free books by mail, this list has got you covered!
If you’re willing to do some legwork…
Head to the local library. Seriously, these people will be so excited to see you and give you free books! All kinds of free books! From A Tale of Two Cities to The Babysitter Club, librarians don’t judge! (Bonus: you can feel good for helping save libraries from extinction!)
Visit used book stores. All sorts of books come through their doors, and the ones that don’t have market value often end up on a “freebie” box on the curb. It might sound sketchy, but then again, one book store’s trash might be your treasure! (Hint: you can also go inside the store, sell your old books for credit, and use the credit to buy new books).
Go on a treasure hunt with BookCrossing. The wonderful, eccentric people at BookCrossing tag books, then release them into the wild for readers to find. Select Books & People, then Go Hunting to discover books near you. And don’t forget to return the favor by planting a new book out there for someone to find!
If you want to browse online…
Check out your local library, again! Many libraries have seen the writing on the wall and decided to go digital. Even better, some libraries have decided to league up and create super-libraries online. Ask your librarian how to access online content, and you will be amazed by the huge selection of eBooks and Audiobooks. And you don’t even have to own a Kindle or Nook to read them!
Search for PDFs. If you’re into classic literature, I’ve got good news for you! A lot of it has entered the public domain, which means that it can be distributed for free. Just type “filetype:PDF BOOK TITLE” into Google, and get reading!
Hit up the free section on your Kindle or Nook. It exists. Go forth and search it.
If you want to get free books in the mail…
Become a book reviewer. You’ll have to invest some time, but when free books start appearing on your doorstep, you’ll be glad you did! Start by contacting publishers (preferably small presses). Write an eloquent letter about your passion for books, your education, and your social platform. Then offer your services as a book reviewer. If the publisher is impressed, they’ll start shipping free books to you. You can also try getting in with a small book review magazine.
Join a book-swap community. Do you have books laying around that you’re willing to trade for something new and–well, okay, maybe not shiny… Join the online book-swapping community and start hawking your wares. For each book you give, you’ll get a credit to order a new book. (Just pay shipping and handling). PaperbackSwap and BookMooch are good starting places.
Sign up for Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library. True, you have to have a kid under five, and you’ll only get picture books, but this is still a fantastic program! The Imagination Library sends one book each month to children between 0-5. Thanks, Dolly!
If you’re a social medialite…
Watch out for giveaways. Believe it or not, we introverted, bookish people have made a big splash on social media. From Bookstagrams to Twitter Pitch Parties, there’s nowhere you won’t find book people. The most powerful social medialites host “giveaways” every so often, which means, you guessed it, free books! If you never want to miss a giveaway, you should follow the leaders on your preferred social media site. Or, if you’re down with being sporadic, just search for #freebooks or #bookgiveaway.
Try to score a rep deal. Your Bookstagram is gorgeous, and you’ve got a mob of ravenous followers. Your hard work is about to pay off. Publishers or book boxes may approach you, offering you free products (or even a paycheck!) to post images of their products. If you don’t like the waiting game, you can try searching for #repcontests.
How long has it been since you stopped by your local library? I’m curious!
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