The rush for required school summer reading list books is on… if you’re working at a public service desk, you’ll already seeing students of all ages coming in who need their required summer reading books, and you’ll probably seeing your collection of these books depleted. There are plenty of free eBook versions of these commonly requested titles available and often students can access and download them immediately.
The library-provided Overdrive and EbscoHost services are available to students and while Overdrive is probably familiar to most library staff, EbscoHost also has eBooks to download (but not Kindle ebooks at this time).
Project Gutenberg (which contains public domain books) is a good choice for free downloads. PG offers most of its books as free Kindle books, as well as in the ePub format. (You can download free Kindle books directly to your Kindle by pointing your Kindle browser to m.gutenberg.org). It also has a useful guide to downloading books from this site.
Epubbooks offers Kindle and ePub books available as free downloads. iBookNook has these downloads also and currently on the site is a recent post that lists 50 classic books that are available to download.
Amazon has free Kindle books that students may be looking for, and Barnes and Noble ran a promotion for a while for free “classic” eBooks but this has apparently ended.
Google offers free eBooks although they don’t organize the free ones as a browsable group. Many classic books are offered for free.
If you only find a book in PDF format and have a real desire to read the book in the ePub format (here’s an article on the advantages of reading an eBook in the ePub format) for $23.95 you can download a PDF to ePub converter.
Looking forward to your comments on this post with your experiences with getting free eBook versions of the required summer reading books and what sites are better than others…
Cooper-Siegel Community Library