Goodreads: Scoring Free Books for Summer Reading

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Posted on 07/09/2013

There are few things more relaxing than spending a summer afternoon with a good book on a swaying hammock or a warm beach. But what can make the experience even better is getting that page-turner for free. Goodreads, a free website for book lovers, offers several ways to score free books for summer reading.


First Reads
Goodreads launched the popular First Reads giveaway program in June 2008 and since then publishers and authors have given away hundreds of thousands of books. Peruse loads of current giveaways based on popular authors, genres and contests ending soon.

Full-Length Books
Some books are available to Goodreads members in their entirety for free. For instance, if you're a fan of Harry Potter you may want to read "James Potter and the Hall of Elder's Crossing," based on the characters and worlds of JK Rowling. The book is available for free to members.

Free eBooks
Twenty-five hundred eBooks are available on Goodreads, many for free. Search by lowest price and you'll see many free downloads offered. Members will be able to save the book as a PDF file onto their computer or device.

Free Excerpts
Some of the most popular books aren't completely free, but you'll be able to test the waters with a free excerpt before making a purchase. For instance, a sample of the mega-popular bestseller "The Help" by Kathryn Stockett is available for free in two languages.

Join a Group
Another way to get free books on Goodreads is through group giveaways. Groups are virtual book clubs or discussion groups for like-minded people and there are thousands of them including several that solely feature book giveaways. Check out the Free Book Giveaway group, the Indie Author Book Club, or the Book Giveaways group. And when you finish your free book consider leaving a review to help another reader decide what to spend their summer afternoon devouring.

By Alison Storm

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