Happy Monday, y’all!
Today I wanted to share with you 8 different ways that I get my books either for free or for really cheap. If you’re a book lover, you know how hard it is to fund your love of books; they’re expensive! Any easy way to get a book for less than full price is a win in my book.
Some of them may be more or less relevant to you, depending on how well you fit into the criteria, but I can almost guarantee that you’ll find yourself able to do at least one of these!
If you’ve never heard of Netgalley, don’t worry about it! Netgalley is a website where publishers post early copies of their books to readers in order to receive feedback. The books are all digital, and can be sent directly to your Kindle App on your phone or tablet!
I love this service, and it’s how I get a lot of my new books. The requirement for Netgalley is that you have either a blog or GoodReads account that you connect to the website, and you review the books as you finish them. They recommend reviewing 80% of the books you receive, but I would suggest reviewing all of them!
You aren’t guaranteed to get the books you request, but if your feedback ratio is good and your profile is filled out, you should still get quite a few! There are also “read now” books that you can immediately download without having to request to read them, which is super cool!
If you’re interested in learning more about Netgalley or signing up, the link is here.
Another website that I’ve recently found is Firsttoread.com. Similar to Netgalley, publishers put their digital books on this website early to receive reader feedback. This website is a little bit different, however.
You don’t have to link any social media or be a book reviewer to get signed up with this site. However, you have to earn points by interacting with the website, which can then be redeemed for a guaranteed copy of the book (limited quantities available). Otherwise, you can enter for a chance to win instead, which is a chance win.
If I’m being honest, I don’t love this website as much as Netgalley. The book selection is much smaller, and you have to use a special app called Adobe Digital Editions in order to get the copies of these books. If this is a website you’re interested in, the link to sign up is here.
One that may seem pretty obvious is the local library! Most towns should have one, and if there’s not one in yours, there should hopefully be one in a nearby location. Libraries are an amazing resource if you’re someone who much prefers physical copies of books to the digital ones.
A library card should be free, or really cheap, so it is well worth the investment for tons of books. Plus, libraries are always getting new books, meaning that your selection should always be fresh!
4. Prime Reading
Something that I hadn’t known about for a long time was the existence of Prime Reading. If you have Amazon Prime currently, you have access to a decent sized library of digital books. While this isn’t technically free, it is a perk of a larger service that you pay for. They range from incredibly popular fiction and nonfiction, to magazines, to lesser known new titles. There is a huge range of novels, and I have a big list of books I want to read from it.
You are given a max of 10 titles to borrow at a time, which is kind of sad but also makes sense. When you finish a book, you simply go to your Prime Reading location and select “return” to remove it from your app, and then you can get a new one! I personally have a private list of books on Prime Reading I want to read but can’t take yet due to the limit.
5. Amazon Kindle Free Books
If you have a smart phone or tablet and are a book lover, chances are you have the Amazon Kindle app already installed! But did you know that the Kindle store often has books that are completely free? I got tons of my books starting out by simply going to the search bar in my app and searching “free” or “free books”. This will bring up those books with a $0 price tag, something I know we all love to see!
They’re not always the most popular books, but some of them do sound interesting. Plus, any classic novel now in public domain is listed as free as well, meaning you can read all sorts of classics you might not have thought of before!
If you don’t have this app, it’s a free download either in the iTunes store of Google Store.
Another website! I personally don’t use Thriftbooks, but my boyfriend swears by it! It’s a website that has tons of books, including textbooks, for extremely cheap. He’s gotten lots of books from there, and usually gets free shipping as well. There’s usually a deal going on to get some sort of discount , so be sure to check this site out next time you’re looking to get a book! The link is here if you want to give it a try!
7. Direct from Publishers
An option that may be a little less available to us common folks is receiving books directly from a publisher. You’ll find that most times the people who are getting these are larger YouTubers and bloggers. If you have a blog or YouTube channel, it might be worth it to reach out to companies and see if they’d be willing to send you something! If you’re an avid reader, it might be worth a shot as well, but no guarantees. (:
8. Secondhand (Garage sales, Goodwill, Salvation Army, Thrift shops, etc.)
I’ve gotten nearly all of my physical books in the past year from the local Goodwill. They’re priced so affordably and always had a great range of titles to choose from! My Goodwill charged $1.49 for paperback and $1.99 for hardcover. I’m not sure if all stores price the same way, but hopefully any local thrift shop has cheap books for you to pick up!
My grandma is a huge advocate for garage sale books. Usually, you can find them anywhere between a quarter and one dollar, which is a great deal. The only issue with this is that you’re usually getting older or lesser known books, not necessarily new or popular ones. If you’re fine with reading whatever you can find, garage sales are great options! Local “for sale” groups on FaceBook may be another great option for you to ask about garage sales or books being given away for free or cheap!
I hope that these tools made it possible for you to discover a few new ways to get books!
Share this with a book lover in your life!