15 of the Best Places to Find Free E-Books – Clark.com – Clark Howard

Posted: October 22, 2020 at 9:57 pm


without comments

Whether you enjoy romances, thrillers, mysteries or something else entirely, you can find a great selection of free e-books online.

In this article, Ill take a close look at 15 of the best websites and resources for finding free e-books online. Ive visited each of the websites listed below and flipped through a few e-books from each to see what the process for each site is like and whats available for free.

When you start looking for free e-books online, it wont be long before you start coming across less-than-reputable websites. Some may actually require you to enter payment information while others provide access to pirated content. Still, there are several websites and apps that you can use to download/read e-books legally and free. Among them are Project Gutenberg, Open Library, HooplaDigital and even Amazon.

If youre looking for a full list of ways to find free e-books that youd normally have to pay for, you probably wont find it on this list. Instead, Ive compiled 15 completely legal and free ways to find free e-books online.

Below, youll find detailed information on 15 different sites where you can legally read free e-books.

Major Genres: Kids, fiction, fantasy, mysteryBest For: Classic titles, kids booksPlatforms: App (iOS and Android), computer (online/download), e-readers (files)

Loyal Books is a great resource for finding both free e-books and free audiobooks. On the website, you can download the file format of your choice (text, EPUB, Kindle and more) or read the e-book directly in your browser. You can also download the Loyal Books app for iOS or Android. It has a rating of 4.4 on the App Store and 4.5 on Google Play.

When I checked out Loyal Books, I visited the website from my computer. Along the left-hand side of the screen, I was able to browse by popular genres (which includes a Top 100 list), more genres and languages. You can also search by title, author or keyword at the top of the screen.

After you find a title youre interested in, you can click on it for more information. Youll see the original author, a summary of the text, related links, a streaming widget, e-book downloads and audiobook options if available. From there, you can download the e-book text file to your computer, download the appropriate e-reader file or begin reading the book instantly in your browser.

Major Genres: Classic literature, educational resourcesBest For: Public domain titles, multiple formatsPlatforms: App (Android), computer (online/download), e-readers (files)

Project Gutenberg was founded in 1971, making it the oldest digital library. The website relies mostly on volunteers to upload digital files including e-books and audiobooks. At the time of writing, there were more than 60,000 free titles available. You dont even have to create an account to access them.

When I checked out Project Gutenberg, I visited the website on my computer. You can also download the app on your Android device; it has an average rating of 4.1 on Google Play. Unfortunately, there isnt a version available for iOS.

You can search for a specific title using the quick search bar at the top of the page. You can also browse available titles by scrolling over search and browse. The frequently downloaded section has several top 100 lists, and the bookshelf category is a great way to browse by subject. Once youve found a title that interests you, you can click on it to see the available files or read the e-book online.

Major Genres: Classic titles, science fiction, short storiesBest For: Public domain titlesPlatforms: App (iOS and Android), computer (download), e-readers (files)

Feedbooks is a digital library that focuses on both public domain texts and original work. While not all of the titles are available for free, you can click on Free Public Domain Books or Free Original Books to narrow your selection.

The partner app, Aldiko, is available for iOS and Android devices. It has a 2.6 rating on the App Store and a 4.0 rating on Google Play. When I visited the website, I thought it was fairly easy to use despite a couple of misdirected links.

When you find a title that youre interested in, you can click on it for more information. Or you can just click the Download button below the books cover on the search page to save the file. All of the books that I downloaded saved as EPUB files, and I wasnt able to make another format choice. But you can download an EPUB reader app for free.

Major Genres: Classic books, romance, thrillers, textbooksBest For: Variety, a large collectionPlatforms: App (iOS and Android), computer (online/download), e-readers (files)

Open Library is a project hosted by Internet Archive. Its goal is to make all published works available to everyone by collaborating with authors, librarians and people on the web. Open Library works like Wikipedia in the sense that you can edit the records yourself and add files/links to free books and e-books that arent listed, which means youll find an impressive collection.

You can visit Open Library online or download the app for your iOS or Android device. Unfortunately, the app has relatively low ratings: 1.5 on the App Store and 2.5 on Google Play. Despite those ratings, I thought the website was relatively easy to use.

Some books are available to sponsor (purchase), but the vast majority of books have a button beneath them that says read, borrow or check availability. Books that have the read button can be accessed immediately in your web browser. To access other books, youll need to create a free Open Library account. Once youve opened the book in the online reader, you can click the download button in the top-right corner to save the PDF or EPUB file to your computer.

Major Genres: Romance, mystery & thriller, science fiction, biographies, action & adventureBest For: Best-selling modern and classic booksPlatforms: Computer (online/download), e-readers (files)

Manybooks is another great resource for finding free e-books online. While there isnt currently an app available for iOS or Android devices, the website is really easy to use. Plus, there are a variety of file formats available to download including PDF and e-reader files.

When you first visit Manybooks, youll see a selection of popular genres available to browse. Or you can use the search bar at the top of the screen to look for a specific author, title or keyword. If you arent sure what you want to read, I recommend checking out Manybooks ultimate guide to the most popular free e-books. There, youll find a top-five list for several genres including romance, mystery, science fiction and more.

Once youve found a title youd like to read, you can click on it for more information including a description, excerpt, publication history and ratings/reviews from other readers. Youll also see the option to download a free file or to read the book online. No matter which method you choose, you shouldnt need to create an account.

Major Genres: Fiction, classics, historyBest For: Finding something newPlatforms: Computer (online/download), e-readers (files)

Digitalbook.io is a great resource for finding free e-books, audiobooks and podcasts. While there isnt currently an available app for either iOS or Android devices, the website is extremely easy to navigate. You can search for a title directly from the homepage, scroll down to see top-rated and trending books or browse by genre.

When I visited the website, I clicked on the fiction genre to begin exploring. Along the left-hand side of the screen, I was able to narrow my search results by format (e-book or audiobook), author, sub-genre and more.

Once you find a book youd like to read, you can click on the title or the Free eBook button on the right-hand side of the screen. From there, youll see the download options (Kindle, EPUB, Text, etc.) as well as the Read Now button that will open the text in your browser. Note that some files are available only from third-party providers (like Gutenberg or LibriVox), but youll still be able to download them on Digitalbook.io.

Major Genres: Romance, FantasyBest For: Discounted books, varietyPlatforms: App (iOS), computer (online/download), e-readers (files)

BookBub is a little different from other resources on this list because it simply compiles links to e-books that are free for only a limited time period. Youll see free e-books from Amazon Kindle, Barnes & Noble Nook, Apple Books, Google Play and Kobo.

If you visit BookBub.com, youll be prompted to create an account to access the website. However, you can visit BookBubs free e-book page to bypass this step. From here, you can access links to hundreds of free e-books. Once youve found a title youre interested in, simply click one of the links below the books price to download it to your computer or device. Some retailers also let you open the e-book directly in your browser.

The BookBub app for iOS devices has a 3.1 rating on the App Store, and there isnt currently an app available on Google Play. When I checked out BookBub, I accessed the website online and found that it was really easy to use once I bypassed creating an account.

Major Genres: Adventure, science fiction, romanceBest For: Self-published e-booksPlatforms: Computer (online/download), e-readers (files)

Smashwords is a website that allows authors to self-publish e-books. While some authors choose to sell their e-books, others are available for free. There isnt currently an app available for Smashwords, but the website is convenient and easy to navigate. When you first visit the website, you can use the price filter at the top of the page to narrow your results so that youre seeing only free e-books.

To access most of the content on Smashwords, youll have to create a free account using your name and email address. Once youre logged in, you can instantly read and/or download free e-books. Once youve found a title youre interested in, click it to see more information and available formats. You can click a specific file type to begin the download or click online reader to see if the book is available to read in your browser without having to download it.

Keep in mind that you most likely wont find popular titles or public domain texts on Smashwords. Instead, youll find a collection of self-published books, essays, plays, poetry and screenplays. If you want to publish your own e-book, you can do that by clicking the publish tab.

Major Genres: Biography, young adult, fiction, literatureBest For: Library titles, new titles, multiple formatsPlatforms: App (iOS and Android), computer (online/download), e-readers (varies by library)

OverDrive provides access to free e-books and audiobooks through your local public library or school. That means youll need to enter your library card number or school/work email address in order to access free titles. Once youve signed in, youll need to save information about your local libraries so that you can see the entire selection available to you.

You can access OverDrive on your computer or as an app on your iOS or Android device. In addition to the OverDrive app (which has a 4.6 rating on both Google Play and the App Store) you can also check out the Libby app for iOS or Android. Its owned by the same company, provides access to the same titles and also has an average rating of 4.6. According to the website, the Libby app is the easiest way to get started, but if you have a device thats not compatible with Libby, you can use the OverDrive app for a similar experience.

Once youve found a title that interests you, you can click it to see additional information. Youll initially see information for the print copy at your nearest library, but if its available as an e-book or audiobook, youll see that noted as well. From there, you can click on the link to your librarys website to borrow the title, request a digital version or get on a waiting list for the book if its not currently available.

Major Genres: Modern classics, fiction, childrensBest For: Library titles, new releases and varietyPlatforms: App (iOS and Android), computer (online/download), e-readers (varies by library)

Hoopla is the digital service of Midwest Tape, which is a leading provider of entertainment and media to public libraries across North America. Youll find free e-books, audiobooks, movies, TV shows and more available from more than 1,500 libraries. You can visit the website or download the app the get started. At the time of writing, the app had a 4.8 rating on the App Store and a 4.7 rating on Google Play. When I checked out the service, I used the desktop version from my laptop.

Hoopla works just like a public library, which means you can instantly borrow free e-books at any time using your library card. If you dont already have a Hoopla account, you can create one for free online. You will need to log in to be able to borrow anything.

Once youre logged in, you can scroll over browse and click on e-books to see the entire available selection. When I checked out Hoopla, there were more than 168,000 e-book titles available. You can sort the titles or narrow your search results by format, user rating, date, language and more. Once youve found a title youre interested in, you can click on it for more information. Below the cover image, youll see the borrow button that you can click to read and/or download the title instantly.

Major Genres: Adventure, romance, self-publishedBest For: Kindle owners, mobile experiencePlatforms: App (iOS and Android), e-readers (Kindle)

Amazon offers a selection of free e-books that are available for anyone to download. The catch is that these e-books are free only on Kindle. But you dont have to have this specific e-reader in order to access the titles. Instead, you can download the Kindle app.

The app is available for both iOS and Android devices. At the time of writing, it had a rating of 4.8 on the App Store and 4.0 on Google Play. To add e-books to your Kindle library, you can visit Amazons website and search free e-books.

I recommend sorting your search results by price: low to high. This will rank the free e-books at the top. Note that some books are free only with a Kindle Unlimited membership. Still, if you want to access these titles, you can sign up for a 30-day free trial.

Major Genres: Historical fiction, romance, mystery, young adultsBest For: Kids books, free magazinesPlatforms: App (iOS and Android), e-readers (Nook)

Like Amazon, Barnes & Noble offers a selection of free e-books for its e-reader: the Nook. Fortunately, you can download the Nook app on your iOS or Android device instead of having to pay for the e-reader itself. The app has a 4.8 rating on the App Store and a 4.5 rating on Google Play.

To find free e-books, you can visit Barnes & Nobles website and navigate to the free e-books page. There, youll find a featured free e-book, top free e-books and additional categories. There are thousands of free e-books for kids as well as staff picks, classics and even magazines.

Once youve found a title youd like to read, you can click on it for more information. From there, you can see a quick overview, publication details and reviews/ratings from other readers. You can also add it to your shopping cart and check out for free. You will have to create a free account to purchase and read the free titles.

Major Genres: Romance, mystery & thriller, fantasy, horror, science fictionBest For: Kobo owners, young adult booksPlatforms: App (iOS and Android), e-readers (Kobo)

Kobo is a company that sells e-books, audiobooks, e-readers and tablets. Still, theres an impressive collection of free e-books that you can access online or from your mobile device.

Similar to Amazon and Barnes & Noble, youll need a Kobo e-reader or the Kobo app to read e-books from this resource. The app is free for iOS and Android devices. At the time of writing, it had a 4.6 rating on the App Store and a 4.3 rating on Google Play. To add free e-books to your Kobo library, you can visit the website online.

Once youve found the free e-books page, you can begin browsing titles by top picks, first in series, editor picks or genre. When you click on a title, youll see a brief overview, how many pages and words the book contains and an estimation of how long itll take to read. Additionally, you can read reviews/ratings from other readers.

Major Genres: Romance, personal development, textbooks, young adultBest For: First books in a seriesPlatforms: App (iOS and Android), computer (online)

Google Play Books is another resource worth checking out if youre looking for free e-books. While not all of the titles are available for free, there is a selection of titles that you can read at no cost. Among these titles, youll find self-help books, mysteries, thrillers, romance novels, young adult fiction and more. Many of these free e-books are the first in a series.

Once youve found a title youre interested in, you can click on it for additional information. Youll see a brief overview of the book as well as ratings and reviews from other readers. From there, you can click Free Ebook to add the title to your library. Of course, youll have to create a free account if you arent already logged in.

Once youve signed in and added books to your library, you can select them and click the read button to open them instantly in your browser. Of course, you can also read them on your mobile device using the Google Play Books app. At the time of writing, the app had a 4.6 rating in the App Store and a 4.1 rating on Google Play.

Major Genres: Engineering, I.T., businessBest For: Student textbooksPlatforms: Computer (online/download)

Bookboon is an online publishing company targeted at students. Youll find textbooks specializing in engineering, information technology and business. In addition to textbooks, Bookboon also provides access to books that focus on both personal and professional growth.

Unfortunately, access to textbooks on Bookboon is free only if you sign up as a student. Business e-books are free for a 30-day trial, but then a monthly subscription is required. Still, this website can be a great resource for STEM students in search of free textbooks.

While there isnt currently an app available for Bookboon, the website is pretty straightforward. Once youve created an account and logged in, you can click on Categories to browse available e-books. You can also look for a title or keyword using the search bar at the top of the page. Titles with the Free Textbook label are available for free if you create a student account. Once you find a title youre interested in, you can click Start Reading to open the book in your browser, add the title to your Bookboon library or download a PDF file.

Ultimately, any of these websites/apps are worth checking out if youre looking for free e-books.

To see whats available at your local public library, be sure to check out HooplaDigital and OverDrive. For general public domain titles, try Project Gutenberg or Feedbooks. Loyal Books and Manybooks also offer a great selection of classic titles. If youre a student looking for textbooks, Bookboon is the website to visit.

For a bigger variety, check out Open Library or BookBub. Digitalbook is another great resource that provides access to a large collection of free e-books, and the website is set up to help you find something new that youll love. If youre more interested in self-published titles, Smashwords is the website for you.

Finally, youll find a collection of free e-books available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Kobo. While each of these e-books are available only on the retailers e-readers, you can download the corresponding free app to access these titles too. If you still havent found what youre looking for, theres a small selection of free e-books on Google Play Books worth checking out that you can read online or in the app.

No matter where you decide to hunt for free e-books, just make sure youre visiting safe and legal websites. You shouldnt have to download any software or enter any payment information in order to read e-books that are truly free.

What are your favorite websites/apps for reading free e-books? Let us know in the comments below!

View original post here:
15 of the Best Places to Find Free E-Books - Clark.com - Clark Howard

Related Post

Written by admin |

October 22nd, 2020 at 9:57 pm