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(last edited Sep 02, 2013 01:03PM)
Sep 02, 2013 12:52PM
There are a great many places to get classic books, especially if you have an e-reader. Many of the links below provide access to free or discounted e-books, including, but not limited to classics. In addition to dedicated e-readers, many tablets and phones allow you to access multiple formats through different apps. My own experience is slanted toward the Kindle, but the following information may be useful to anyone who uses e-readers or wants to participate in our Read a Classic Challenge.
Please be aware that copyright and public domain laws vary by country and the sources referenced below may not be relevant if you live outside of the US.
Feel free to comment below or contact me if you have any questions, notice any errors, or wish to add resources you have found helpful.
The type of e-reader you choose may determine what ecosystem (Amazon, BN, Kobo) you most commonly use. After collecting/purchasing so many ebooks in one ecosystem, you may be reluctant later to switch to another format. I prefer the Amazon ecosystem, as Amazon has one of the largest collections of discounted/free books, and supports multiple third party formats.
Overall there are three types of readers: E-ink (less eyestrain, longer battery), Tablets (more than just a reader), and phone/ipod. The latter two depend on apps for various types of formats and many companies have apps for the more open tablets (ipad, nexus), some of the most common formats are listed below by device.
Kindle (eink): “Kindle Format 8 (AZW3), Kindle (AZW), TXT, PDF, unprotected MOBI, PRC natively; HTML, DOC, DOCX, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP through conversion” (Kindle Website)
Kindle (Fire): “Kindle (AZW), KF8, TXT, PDF, unprotected MOBI, PRC natively, Audible Enhanced format (AAX), DOC, DOCX, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP, Dolby Digital (AC-3), Dolby Digital Plus (E-AC-3), non-DRM AAC, MP3, MIDI, PCM/WAVE, OGG, WAV, MP4, AAC LC/LTP, HE-AACv1, HE-AACv2, AMR-NB, AMR-WB, HTML5, CSS3, MP4, 3GP, VP8(.webm)” (Kindle Fire Website).
Nook: “EPUB & PagePerfect™ NOOK Books are the standard format for NOOK Books in the Barnes & Noble online store. NOOK Tablet supports ePub, CBZ and PDF formatted books” (Nook Website)
) is a quick and easy way to manage your e-book files from various sources (think iTunes for ebooks). In many cases you can edit, convert, edit, and upload the files to your device with Calibre. You can also drag the files to your device via USB. Although it is best to download the most preferable file times for your device (AZW or MOBI for Kindle) it is possible to convert non-DRM (Digital Rights Management) files using Calibre.
Calibre Conversion Formats (According to the Calibre Manual):
“Input Formats: CBZ, CBR, CBC, CHM, DJVU, DOCX, EPUB, FB2, HTML, HTMLZ, LIT, LRF, MOBI, ODT, PDF, PRC, PDB, PML, RB, RTF, SNB, TCR, TXT, TXTZ
Output Formats: AZW3, EPUB, FB2, OEB, LIT, LRF, MOBI, HTMLZ, PDB, PML, RB, PDF, RTF, SNB, TCR, TXT, TXTZ”
Amazon Conversion Formats (Careful of using the free email to avoid charges):
HTML, DOC, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP through conversion. You can send these to Amazon to be converted, they will deliver them to your kindle for a fee, or if you change your email address from @kindle.com to @free.kindle.com they will be delivered for free via wifi. You can figure out your email on the Amazon website.
General / Third Party Sites:
Download non-DRM (Digital Rights Management), out of copyright, public domain, creative commons, or promotional content from various sources such as those listed below.
*MobileRead Wiki (Many sources)
*Many Books (Easy to use)
*MobileRead (Good collections of free works)
*Smashwords (good source of indy free/sale books)
*Inkmesh (Search Engine for Promotions (Kindle, Smashwords, Baen)
Baen Library (Science Fiction free books/series):
(Click only ebooks)
(Not the easiest to use site)
(some are downloadable, can be read in a browser
Free Book Sifter
Amazon/Kindle Related Websites:
Amazon (Books, newspapers, active content, etc…). These will be stored in the cloud and accessible on all your devices running Kindle. Some of them will have voice or 1 time lending options. They will survive any device crash and can be synced across devices. On the Kindles you can search the stores and sort by price under each genre to find deals or free book.
Kindle Daily Deals:
Kindle Monthly Deals:
Top 100 Free & Paid by Genre:
Popular Classics (Many Free):
Barnes & Noble / Nook Related Websites:
Nook Daily Find
Nook Books Under $2.99
Nook Books Under $5
Fiction & Literature Classics (Not Free)
Kobo Related Websites:
Kobo Classics (Not Free)
Using your library card, you can access digital books and audiobooks. You can use the overdrive app (many phones/tablets), the e-pub versions (For Nook or Sony), or the Kindle versions. Note some have a waiting list, some have to be downloaded and loaded via USB.
Buffalo/Erie Library Books:
New York, NY Library (Bigger selection for NY State residents):
Blogs (updated lists of free and discounted ebooks)
If you want to keep up on recent deals, the best way is to subscribe to a daily email or blog posting. An easy way to keep track of these is to use an RSS reader.
(Former Site *Ireaderreview:
(good updates on ereader hardware, trends). I occasionally contribute tips to this blog and have found Andrys Basten who runs the site to be very friendly.
Kindle World Book Links:
*Pixel of Ink: (just the bigger deals)
*EreaderIQ (Better coverage of picture books, etc...)
Kindle nation Daily:
Kindle Forum (Amazon)
Booksprung (mix of Kindle and ereader news)
From the Desk of Mrs. Wizard (Helpful for beginners, but not for experienced users)
Bookbub (Daily Email of Deals)
There are many more but content is really based on your tastes and interests, so find them on the web or explore some of the blogs with recommended links.
Librivox (Classics read by volunteers, Free)
Books Should Be Free (most links to Librivox books, more visual interface).
Audible (avoid signing up for the subscription service)
Audible Daily Deal
Whispersync Books – (Buy the book, get the audiobook for free/cheaper).
Whisper Sync (Free add-on once book is purchased)
Whisper Sync (99cents add-on once)
Whisper Sync ($3.95 add-on)
Oct 01, 2014 04:03PM
The following books are on sale this month (October 2014) for Amazon Kindle. They fall into the more recent sci-fi classics genre.
- Time and Again by Jack Finney (1970)
- Kindred by Octavia Butler (1979).
If you like fantasy books I also recommend the Legends of Muirwood trilogy which isn't a classic, but is quite enjoyable.
Dec 26, 2014 08:26AM
Great resources, thanks John! And Seasons Greetings!
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