It’s no secret that I LOVE to read. In the fall I gave you my formula for how to create a year-long reading plan.
My 2014 reading list is lofty, and I imagine I won’t get through every single book within a 12-month period, but I like to record the books I want to read, so I don’t forget about them.
I also add to this list throughout the year.
During the month of April we will be talking a lot about self-care, and, to me, reading is a vital part of this! Reading educates me, inspires me, motivates me–and even helps me to relax!
I like to always have one book I am reading (and more often than not I have two to three going at a time!).
You might ask: How in the world does she afford so many books?!
Image from pixabay.com
Check out these 4 places to find free or cheap books!
1. The Library
This used to be my go-to source, and it still is where I look for books that I either cannot afford or simply do not care to own. However, I’ll be honest: Since becoming a mom, I’ve developed a vice called “I forget to turn in library books.”
Seriously, y’all–last week I had to pay a $23 fee!
Clearly, the library isn’t working out for me as well as it used to. Free? (Not so much anymore!)
To my defense, $10 of that $23 was for a book which my 5-year-old hid from me in December. (And she just confessed her deception on that one a week ago: “But Mommy! I didn’t want you to take this book back to the library! It’s my favorite!” Yeah–we had quite the chat after that one!)
Still…if you can commit to turning the books in on time, the library is an amazing resource for reading material.
image from pixabay.com
I get free or cheap eBooks for my Kindle from Amazon.com all.the.time! I will search for free books from the bestsellers list.
If I think the free or cheap books I stumble across may also interest my readers, I usually link to them on my Facebook page.
3. Bundle Sales
If you are new to this site, you may not realize that I also co-own an eBook bundle business–Ultimate-Bundles.com!
We launched in spring 2013 with The Ultimate Homemaking eBook Bundle. We held a healthy living bundle in the fall, and be on the lookout for the 2nd annual Ultimate Homemaking eBook Bundle coming soon!
These are bundles of self-published books sold together for one low price. It’s a phenomenal deal–and it gives you reading material for a year at a time! (Or you can gift some of the books.)
I also enjoy purchasing mini eBook bundles from Bundle of the Week. These are bundles of 5 self-published eBooks, and they are sold exclusively through the Life Your Way newsletter list.
4. Tyndale Rewards
I recently discovered the Tyndale Rewards program, and I’m super excited about it!
Tyndale House is a major Christian publisher, and I know I am getting top-quality books from them. Although I would never knock self-published authors–I am one myself!–I believe it is still less risky to purchase a book put out by a reputable publisher, who you know has teams going over it with fine-tooth combs before publication!
I have never seen a rewards program quite like Tyndale Rewards. You can earn FREE books for the entire family–novels, devotionals, bedtime stories–without having to make one single purchase!
This is the perfect rewards program for the family on a super tight budget.
How does Tyndale Rewards work?
When you sign up for an account, you will periodically receive e-mails that will make you aware of opportunities to earn points. However, you do not need to wait for the e-mails in order to start earning your points. Visit the “Earn Points” section for a complete list of ways to get more points.
Earning is so incredibly easy. For example, you can earn 10 points by referring a friend, 5 points by e-mailing in a question to a Tyndale author, 15 points by taking a Bible survey and 25 points by joining a focus group.
None of these involve buying, yet the points will accumulate and earn you FREE books!
The Tyndale Rewards program also offers FREE downloads on their site. These are beautiful printables and also sample chapters from some of their books. I will be sharing some of these freebies on Facebook over the coming weeks.
You can sign up for the Tyndale Rewards program here.
David C Cook gives away free e books every week. I’ve gotten several wonderful books from them.
If I’m looking for a book, I always check out abebooks.com out first. They have a huge selection and great prices.
Only available in the states… What about us Canadians?? 🙁
BetterWorldBooks.com Cheap new and used books and ebooks. Most used books under $5 and free shipping worldwide. Have ordered lots of books from them and am satisfied with the service. Hope this helps.
Jungledealsandsteals.com!!!! Free kindle books listed everyday!!!!
Paperbackswap is awesome for free books!!! I still love being able to hold a book in my hand and this site is awesome!!
I love paperbackswap.com too. They have a huge selection and it is free to use. You only pay the media mail rate to send books to other members (that is how you earn book credits) and when you request a book, it doesn’t cost you anything but a book credit. The more books you are willing to part with, the more chances to get new (used) books! And media mail rate is usually less than $3 for a book.
as a librarian can I offer a suggestion to your fine problem? if you have an eReader device many libraries now offer free books on eReaders through a consortium or other service. it’s free and the software returns the book for you so there are NO FINES!! It’s a great way to support your library and avoid fines, plus you can usually access the site from your device or home computer so you don’t have to make a special trip if you don’t want to.
Two other sources I use for cheap books: Goodwill (super cheap paperbacks and hard covers, sometimes very new and good condition stuff)
Twitter and Facebook. Follow your favorite authors. They will tell you when their books are on discount and when their friends and favorite books are on discount. you may have to wait to get the latest thing, but you will get some great deals and discover some new things. Also, authors are fun to follow and very funny.
A lot of the books my husband and I own come from goodwill and similar stores. You may have to dig, but the have good ones. I also suggest remantbooks.org. It is run by a missionary family & is a great source.
I love paperbackswap.com! I am still someone that likes to hold books in her hands, and smell the pages as I turn them! This website has been a lifesaver for me for a few years now, and I have saved hundreds of dollars by swapping with other readers!
Ashley @ Joyful Thrifty Home
I have a book obsession too. I can also totally relate to your problem with remembering to return library books, except I am not a mom yet so I can even use that as an excuse. I recently had a $12 fine just for forgetting to renew my books one day late. My library has a grace period of three days but on the fourth day you get charged for all four days. Not good for someone who is a bit forgetful but likes to check out 20-30 books at a time! As for getting books inexpensively, I get tons of free eBooks by following sites like eReader Girl. I have way more eBooks that I will probably ever read but it also gives me an endless supply of reading material. I also do still use the library and go to book sales every now and then. There’s also a good used book store in the main branch of my local library that I go to sometimes as well.
BetterWorldBooks.com is a great site for new and used books. They also have ebooks. Most used books are less than $5 and free shipping worldwide. You can donate your used books to them if you want and they support libraries and literacy. Have purchased many books from them and am very satisified.
A couple people have already mentioned PaperBackSwap.com, which I also LOVE and have used for years!
Here’s how it works: All you have to do is create an account for free, list your books that you are ready to share, and send them out to other members when they are requested. Yes, you pay the postage to send your books out (between 2 and 3 dollars for an average-sized book), BUT you get a Book Credit for sending each book (each Book Credit is good for one book – you can order from any member in the club), AND when you request books for yourself, the senders pay the postage to send those books to you. You even get 2 startup Book Credits free if you are the first account at your household – you can use those credits to order 2 books for yourself, right away!
I love it because I can keep the books I want for my permanent collection, and re-swap the ones that I just want to read once. I don’t have an e-reader, and PBS is such a great resource!
Join the Club and Swap Books for Free! – PaperBackSwap.com (Disclosure: I’ll get a credit if you sign up through that link! Thanks!)
Rachel @ A Mother Far from Home
Great value in this post. I just downloaded a slew of free books!
Libraries are awesome! Our library has an eBook/audiobook borrowing system, which is really nice for the automatic returning feature. Another way to get cheap books is through library book sales. Sometimes on the last day of the sale they’ll have a deal where you can fill a bag of books for $10.
We also have a huge used book store in our city that facilitates book trade-ins, either for cash or store credit. It’s a great way to declutter, and then get “new” books we actually want or need with the store credit.
There are several secondhand book stores in our area. Not only are the books cheaper but some stores offer credit for books you bring in to sell.
Bookbub.com. you can get free books or very discounted ebooks. You sign up and pick your choice of types of books. Can get a email daily or weekly
So I signed up for Tyndale, but I cannot find their books. Where are they? Thanks 🙂
That’s quite a library fine. Yikes! You should check out LibraryElf.com. We always have a ton of books, movies, video games, CDs checked out. I get an email each morning that lists what’s due within 3 days and 7 days, what came in on the hold shelf, and everything else that is checked out, but due later than 7 days on all 5 of our cards. It’s so easy to keep track now, the elf does it for me. I can warn the kids their books are coming due and not pay those high fines. The service is free.
Don’t forget about your local independent used book stores! Shop local and support small businesses! We moved recently so I’m still searching for one in my new area, but I always found great deals at the used book stores back “home.”