E-Book resources | Daily News

E-Book resources

We are stuck home, but that doesn’t mean we can’t take a voyage back to 19th-century rural England or be whisked off to the coastal marshes of North Carolina or a far-flung fantasy world awash with wizardry.

Reading is one way to fill the sudden rash of reclusive days and turn our minds away from the torrent of distressing news. But, with libraries and bookstores closed and social distancing the edict, snapping up new titles is tricky. If you have just a smidgen of tech competency, devouring books on an electronic device may be the way to go.

Here are some tips and websites to help you start or expand an e-book library for less.

OverDrive: More than 11,000 libraries allow you to electronically borrow books. You can check out ebooks through your local library’s website and have them sent directly to your computer, tablet or mobile device. Most libraries lend through a digital service called OverDrive. You can download the OverDrive app and check out digital titles, audiobooks and movies onto every major desktop and mobile platform. We’re not talking virtually dusty e-titles, either. New releases are always available. OverDrive is a collection of eBooks and audio books for adults and kids and can be used in conjunction with the popular, user-friendly Libby App.

OverDrive includes special collections such as: cookbooks, classic westerns, audio books with great narrators, local reads, and more. Titles are either Available or you can Place a Hold and will be notified once the title is available.

If you would rather not wait, then check out the Catch of the Day collection which features popular new titles with seven-day loans and no waiting. Once you’ve found the perfect read, borrowing options include seven or 14 days. After the borrowed time period, the book is removed from your personal library ‘shelf’, thereby, easing the worry about overdue books.

Amazon.com: The e-book authority, Amazon boasts millions of digital books and a slew of Kindle book deals, steeply discounted e-books for readers of all ages. You’ll find a link along the top of the Kindle store main page. Kindle Unlimited subscribers pay $9.99 a month to have unlimited access to more than 1 million titles. Right now, Prime members can receive two months of Kindle Unlimited for free. Prime members also have access to hundreds of complimentary e-books, audiobooks and digital magazines with Prime Reading, a subset of Kindle Unlimited. Type “0.00” in the Kindle eBooks search bar and view hundreds of free e-books, including popular titles, children’s books and literary classics.

Apple Books: Apple’s Books app is one of the most prominent digital bookstores out there. And, as of just this week, Apple announced a “stay at home” collection of free books in various genres. There are titles for adults and children. Simply click Book Store in the app (it’s pre-loaded on all Apple devices). Visit apple.com/apple-books/.

Project Gutenberg: This website is a volunteer effort to digitize and archive cultural works and more esoteric publications. Most of the 50,000-plus free items are the full texts of public domain titles, including classics from authors like William Shakespeare and Jane Austen, that can be viewed on almost any computer. No fee or registration required, but donations are appreciated.

Internet Archive: The nonprofit library features more than 12 million freely downloadable books and texts, including a collection of 550,000 modern e-books that may be borrowed by anyone with a free archive.org account. Their catalogue will continue to grow. They claim to scan 1,000 books per day in 28 locations around the world.

Open Library: This is an offshoot of Internet Archive (with a much more friendly interface, in my opinion) that aims to create “one web page for every book ever published,” according to the site. Millions of titles are collected from the Library of Congress and other libraries, including New York state’s, and Amazon.com. Users are also allowed to contribute through a Wikipedia-like interface. Each title can be read in a Web browser or in Adobe digital editions as a PDF or EPUB. Visit openlibrary.org/.

BookBub.com: Register with BookBub.com and you’ll receive a daily email with free and deeply discounted e-books tailored to your interests. BookBub doesn’t sell or supply books, they simply alert you to limited-time offers that become available on retailers like Amazon’s Kindle store, Barnes & Noble’s Nook store, Apple’s iBooks and others.

Pixel of Ink: The website promotes free and discounted Amazon Kindle books in just about every genre, from romance to Western to nonfiction. Basically they search the thousands of e-titles on Amazon and post the best bargains. They update their list of steals and deals multiple times a day. If you don’t have a Kindle, you can download a free Kindle reading app, for your computer or mobile device.

HundredZeros.com and eReaderIQ.com: Both sites are also ebook aggregators. Hundred Zeros is an updated catalog of best-selling e-books in all genres that you can download for free from Amazon. Similarly, eReaderIQ is a free price tracking service for Kindle books featuring links to free titles, price drops and books under a buck.

TumbleBooks is designed for kids through age 12. It features over 1,100 titles which includes animated, talking picture books, read-along chapter books, graphic novels, non-fiction books, games, puzzles, and videos. It also features a selection of books in French and Spanish.

TumbleBooks has a supportive reading feature which highlights sentences as it is read aloud to your child. It’s the perfect add-on resource for at home learning.

Flipster is a collection of over 40 popular magazines and features titles such as Maclean’s, People, Organic Gardening, Men’s Health, National Geographic, Seventeen, and Chickadee (for young kids). Current and past issues can be read on your computer, laptop, tablet, or smartphone. Most magazines, once checked out, are held on your “shelf” for at least one week.

PressReader offers over 6,000 magazines and newspapers from around the world in multiple languages. Publications from Albania to Zimbabwe, and countries in between, are included.

Magazines covering niche topics such as chickens, cross stitching, birdwatching, and gaming can be found along with titles such as Canada’s History, Inuit Art, Car and Driver, and O, the Oprah Magazine. Worldwide, national and provincial newspapers can also be found on PressReader.

Like Flipster, archived issues can be accessed. Features include the ability to share or print articles and have text read aloud. (Times Union)

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