How I read ebooks for free part I

I bet that got your attention. I’m only addressing legal/questionably legal methods,here. As someone who one day hopes to make a living from the sale of books, I can’t, in good conscience, endorse illegally downloading ebooks. Don’t worry, with this handy guide you won’t need to!

Method 1: My public library! (I <3 U LAPL)

Okay, get this, some libraries have ebook collections! WHAAAT.

It’s easy, you just obtain a library card, go to the library website, and find their resources. The Los Angeles Public Library’s collection is called “OverDrive.” While you’re in there, check out the other collections. There are some cool resources in there, such as scanned historical documents, newspapers, and music.

lapl

Pros:

You can read new releases!
The ebooks usually come in a couple of different formats, such as DRM and non-DRM epubs, or in Kindle format. (Selecting Kindle format takes you to Amazon’s Kindle content manager).

You can download to your computer, or straight to any tablet, e-reader with an internet browser, or even your phone, and open them using an ebook reading app if the format isn’t compatible with your device. (I use Moon+ Reader and Aldiko, the latter of which is great for DRM protected material).

IT’S FREE AND LEGAL!!!! and INSTANT!

Cons:

Your library’s collection may not have EVERYTHING. (However if you’re patient you can always request they acquire the titles you’d like to read. Just make sure that title is available in ebook format from the publisher)

The library’s collection has a finite number of copies. (Usually 2). This often annoys me because I don’t really understand how an easily copied file can logically be called unavailable, but the publisher and the author have to make dollars somehow. My library has a hold system just like they do for physical copies. I am too impatient to use it but if you are willing to wait a couple weeks the world is your oyster.

Like any library material you check out, you have a certain amount of time in which to read it, after which the file becomes inaccessible on your device. The Kindle files are neat because you get an email warning you that your library loan is ending. (I guess some of the non DRM epub files might not be subject to this but don’t quote me)

Happy reading! Keep an eye out for Part II!

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