Nowadays, free reading material is abundant. Click on a few links and you have access to thousands of digital books to read at your leisure. Here are a few of my favorite sites that you can use to source your e-book library:
OverDrive: OverDrive connects your computer, tablet, or smartphone to your public library so you can download e-books for the very attractive price of free. If your local library participates, you’ll be able to download new releases, kids books, audiobooks, and more with the OverDrive app. You can borrow up to five titles at a time and place as many as seven e-books on hold. And the selection of digital books might be even greater than what you find at your physical library.
Open Culture: Open Culture’s mission is to collect the best free educational and cultural media available online. To that end, the site offers 550 free audiobook, 600 free e-books, and hundreds of other textbooks and online courses. Their e-book collection contains classics like Aesop’s Fables, as well as modern books from the likes of Neil Gaiman and Joyce Carol Oates.
Google Books: Google has been scanning old books for a number of years now and putting them online. You can also download quite a few free e-books from Google, particularly classics like Treasure Island, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, and Gulliver’s Travels.
Project Gutenberg: Project Gutenburg offers something for everyone. The first producer of free e-books has more than 45,000 options available to download (and more than 55,000 additional e-books through its partner page). You’ll find audiobooks and even digitized sheet music on the site. If you’re overwhelmed by so many free choices, check out the top 100 downloaded books to see where you start.
MSDN: Finally, if your tastes run to the technical, check out Eric Ligman’s collection of free Microsoft e-books on topics such as Windows 8, SQL Server, Office 2013, Azure, and more. The collection boasts more than 130 free technical e-books that focus on learning to use Microsoft technologies or even just learning to code.
Photo credit: OverDrive