A study published by Elsevier, in the journal Social Science & Medicine, looked at the reading patterns of more than 3000 people and found that on average, book readers live for about two years longer than non-readers. This is a good reason for people to start reading more.
According to Wikipedia, e-books gain US libraries’ support in 1998. In 2000’s, especially between 2005-2008, libraries experienced 60% growth in e-book collections. In July 2010, Amazon.com reported sales of e-books for its proprietary Kindle outnumbered sales of hardcover books for the first time ever. At the beginning people use computer and physical e-readers to read e-books, and now apps such as Amazon Kindle, iBooks and Kobo eReader. There are plenty of free e-books out there, you just need to know where to look.
If you own a Kindle (or download the Kindle app), the Amazon store itself has a collection of free ebooks. All you need to do is: go to Amazon, click on the ‘Kindle ebooks’, type in the search keywords of your choice and search. Then at the right side of the screen, sort the books ‘Price: Low to High’, you will see many books with price $0.00. Browse them through and pick the one you like.
Kobo is another major player in e-books market. To find free e-books, go to Kobo app review page, click on the main page it will take you to the Kobo store. Similarly, type in the keywords you want to search and sort the ebooks by ‘Price Low to High’.
Project Gutenberg offers over 53,000 free ebooks and it is growing. Selections include free epub books and kindle books, you can download them or read them online.
This site has a large range of free ebooks. Go to the site via the app review page, then click on the ‘Free’ button on the top menu, you will be taken to the free section.
Smashwords is another site which offers free ebooks. It has made it easier for you to find free e-books by having a ‘free’ button at the front page. There are many small independent publishers on Smashwords. The ebooks on Smashwords can be read online, or can be downloaded to reading devices or apps such as the iPhone or Amazon Kindle.
If you prefer to listen than read, LibriVox would be of interests. LibriVox has a huge number of free audiobooks available. LibriVox volunteers record chapters of books in the public domain, and then LibriVox releases the audio files back onto the net for free.
If you are interested, you can become a volunteer too – it does not require any experience with recording or audio engineering or acting or public speaking. All you need is a computer, a microphone, some free recording software, and your own voice.
Cover image source: unsplash, James Tarbotton