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Old 08-16-2019, 12:19 AM   #1
Mitchie23
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What is the future of reading?

Just recently decided to switch to e-books when I read an articlestating all the pros and cons of e-books and print books. E-books are so much cheaper than printed copies, and it helps save millions of trees being cut down every day.

I'm just having a hard time looking for sources where I can read e-books for free (since I don't have that much budget yet to buy copies).

I'd be glad to take any suggestion!


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Old 08-16-2019, 01:23 AM   #2
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Old 08-16-2019, 04:21 AM   #3
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Yes, free e-books are much cheaper than printed books you have to buy! Otherwise, not necessarily so, though this depends on where you live, and what books you read, but there are printed books to be had for a few cents second hand, or for free at libraries. Which, of course, is not meant to discourage you from reading e-books, free or not. Pulpmeister has given good advice, and then there are all the free e-books on Project Gutenberg, and, for instance, also a small library which I'm not allowed to mention here.

E-books can only be legitimately free when they are out of copyright, or when the author has deliberately decided to give them away for free (either out of the goodness of their hearts, or for promotional reasons, in which case it's usually the first book of a series, the next ones will have to be bought). If you find other e-books for free, they are pirated, and this is very much not something we want to support or encourage here.
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Old 08-16-2019, 07:12 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Mitchie23 View Post
Just recently decided to switch to e-books when I read an articlestating all the pros and cons of e-books and print books. E-books are so much cheaper than printed copies, and it helps save millions of trees being cut down every day.

I'm just having a hard time looking for sources where I can read e-books for free (since I don't have that much budget yet to buy copies).

I'd be glad to take any suggestion!

Look at the 99 cents bargains on Amazon. Depending on your vetting process or attention span, you are bound to get great finds there or for FREE on gutenberg. E.g all the books of Charles Dickens are free as e-books on the latter site. That's a lot of reading material. Then you have Melville or Dumas, or Cervantes.
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Old 08-16-2019, 07:20 AM   #5
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There are sites that track price drops you can sign up on, and create lists of books you'd like to read. They notify of price drops etc. Bookbub and ereaderiq are two well known sites. Freereadfeed is another, although I've not gone there lately.

Many Public libraries offer ebooks, depending on your location and what device you use to read. I'm fortunate to live in an area with good libraries that offer a broad range of ebooks I can read on my Kindles.

Amazon's offering of freebies is also fairly broad on any given day, depending on the genres you like to read.
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Old 08-16-2019, 09:12 AM   #6
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The future of Reading is an inherently linear one. It's just one damn word after another.
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Old 08-16-2019, 12:51 PM   #7
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The future of Reading is an inherently linear one. It's just one damn word after another.
Unless one is a Borg!
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Old 08-16-2019, 01:39 PM   #8
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Old 08-16-2019, 04:43 PM   #9
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Old 08-16-2019, 05:05 PM   #10
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I signed up to both bookbub.com and bookgorilla.com and specified Amazon as my book source with them. Each sends me a list of books on sale at Amazon every day. Typically the sale price is $2 although $3 isn't uncommon. There is usually a free one listed as well. I've found this to be an excellent source of pointers to bargains.

When I got my new Paperwhite it included a 6 month free subscription to Kindle Unlimited, which I signed up for. They have something like a million and a half books and I can borrow them freely as long as I'm a member. Membership is $10 a month.

These don't include books from the big 5 publishers so I assumed I wasn't going to be interested beyond my free 6 months. However, during that period I found a lot of books by authors I'd never read and some were excellent. A few of the books were books I'd have never bought at their $10 price, never having heard of the author, but since they were free I gave them a try and I'm really glad I did.

I have enough books in my library to keep me in good books for the rest of my life but I've found that Kindle Unlimited has improved my reading so i didn't cancel after my 6 months was up. I still haven't decided if I'm going to but I've been paying for it for a few months now and I can't deny I'm enjoying it. I don't need it and I really can't afford it but I'm very glad I have it.

If you pay the silly publisher's silly prices then reading ebooks won't save you any money. If you shop wisely ebooks are vastly cheaper. And better. if you think paper books are better try holding your finger down on a word and see if it's definition pops up.

Of course you don't want to swat flies with your ereader.

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Old 08-16-2019, 10:07 PM   #11
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I don't need it and I really can't afford it but I'm very glad I have it.
As far as the monthly subscription price for Kindle Unlimited goes, you can reduce that by prepaying for a 6 month, 12 month, or 24 month membership. Usually during prime day, or black friday, it is offered at a reduced price (the longer the term the bigger % saving). The 24 month membership I got this prime day cost $143.80 instead of $239.76 (24 x $9.99). With tax I end up paying $6.43 per month. It will automatically start after my current 12 month prepaid plan expires next february. So I am good and paid for until O2/2022. Only problem is that you have to pay ahead of time, so if the $9.99 per month is too expensive, paying $143.80 is even more out of reach if you are on a tight budget with fixed income (like you are). But maybe worth considering?

Used to be a webpage that everybody can use (only one per account, only if you don't already have a new plan lined up). Now it appears to have shifted to ads only that show up when going to the KU page ( www.amazon.com/ku ). Couldn't find a direct link to webpage this year. After I followed it once to buy it, I could not follow the ad again as I already used that offer up. For prime day the ad was running whole month of july.

ETA: I forgot that I used my prime card to pay for it. So there is another 5% savings as I don't carry a balance. Effectively paying $6.11 per month.

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Old 08-17-2019, 04:05 PM   #12
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Feedbooks (http://www.feedbooks.com/) has quite a few free books (they also sell books). ManyBooks (https://manybooks.net/) has free books (I think they also sell books). Archive.org has books available for download -- and they also allow you to borrow books that aren't in the public domain (not necessarily that well formatted). Amazon, Kobo and Barnes & Noble also offer free books for download (usually the first in a series in hopes you'll buy the later books in the series). That said there's also a lot of cheap books ($1-$3) on all these sites. I've bought a of books on Amazon that are out of print and hard to find. Whole collections from various authors for $3 or less.
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Old 08-17-2019, 04:24 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mitchie23 View Post
Just recently decided to switch to e-books when I read an articlestating all the pros and cons of e-books and print books. E-books are so much cheaper than printed copies, and it helps save millions of trees being cut down every day.

I'm just having a hard time looking for sources where I can read e-books for free (since I don't have that much budget yet to buy copies).

I'd be glad to take any suggestion!

One of the futures of reading is the prices getting more and more expensive.
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Old 08-17-2019, 07:47 PM   #14
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One of the futures of reading is the prices getting more and more expensive.
This begs for expansion: what prices, where, and why?
Inquiring minds and all that...
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Old 08-17-2019, 09:33 PM   #15
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I'm just having a hard time looking for sources where I can read e-books for free (since I don't have that much budget yet to buy copies).

I'd be glad to take any suggestion!

As mentioned, here at Mobileread there's a huge collection of free ebooks in many formats.

Gutenberg.org has public domain ebooks, which include a whole lot of classics. For most people, those aren't what they're looking for, but whatever your reading preferences, there's probably at least a few there that you'd enjoy.

Tor.com gives away a free science fiction ebook every month for people on their email list. (They also have free fiction on their site, but it's not in easily downloadable formats.)

BookBub has a mailing list (or rather, several) that send free and cheap ebook offers; pick the genres you want to hear about. These are often promos by authors and publishers - often, the free ebook is a short story or novella, and they point you at the rest of their books. It's a nice way to discover new authors.

Smashwords has a lot of free ebooks. Since they're a self-publishing site with very few restrictions on what they carry, it's like having your very own digital slushpile of books written with the premise, "I have a copy of Word and that makes me an author!" However, there are also several former-mainstream authors who reclaimed the rights to their books and now publish on Smashwords, although many have shifted to Amazon only. There's some good books there, but you have to love wading through books to find them.

Baen's free library is smaller than it used to be when ebooks were a novelty instead of a main source of income. It still has a lot of free science fiction books.

The Open Library, connected with archive.org and the wayback machine, has some free ebooks, free magazine archives, and loaner ebooks you can borrow for two weeks. Warning: They're all PDFs. Some of them say "PDF and epub," but they mean "epub auto-generated from the PDF," so the formatting is sometimes wrong, there's no italics or bold, and there may be typos. Only use them if you have a device that's comfortable reading paperback-sized PDFs.

Freebooksy is another source of temporary/promo free books, mostly available through Amazon.

If you enjoy fanfiction, or think you might, the Archive of Our Own has literally millions of fanworks which are downloadable in several formats. (If you don't know how to look: Search for a tv show or movie you like, and use the filters to block out incomplete works and any pairings you don't want to read - if you don't want romance, search for "gen" fic. Then sort by kudos or bookmarks to find the ones other people recommend most. Pay attention to the content notes in the "additional tags" field and skip anything that doesn't appeal to you.)

LibriVox has public-domain audiobooks. They're not technically ebooks, but if you're starting to get into "book-content that takes up no physical space," it's worth looking into.

If there are genres or particular types of books you like, mentioning them will help - there are publishers and authors who have freebies and low-cost ebooks, but there are far too many to just start listing them.
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