So you got yourself a new Kindle. Now, what? You could spend a small fortune filling your Kindle up with books! There are literally millions of free books available for your Kindle! Amazon alone has over 50,000 free books. The trick is finding them and getting them onto your Kindle. By the time you reach the end of this guide your Kindle should be overflowing with books!
So what kinds of books can I really get for free? And why are they free? Many of the works available are classics that are now in the public domain. You are probably familiar with many of these great works of Huck Finn, Sherlock Holmes, Charles Dickens, the Greek classics, Shakespeare and much more. Personally, I have been busy acquiring and reading all the Tarzan books I grew up with. All for free! Many other books are released for free by small indie authors who just wish to get known. Many of these books are quite good. New books are frequently offered for free by authors and publishers for a limited time to get some momentum going. It is this last category that we are going to focus on first.
One word of warning before we get started. The Internet and even Amazon’s Kindle publishing platform has made it easy for anyone to publish almost anything. No longer is there a gatekeeper checking for quality, editing, formatting or content before its made available to you. Many of the sites I will mention in this guide do put out professional material, but online publishing is kind of like the Wild West yet. As a result, you will find lots of books that are total crap and amateurish! If that happens just delete it and find another book. They are free after all. With a little bit of work though you will also find lots of gems.
If you don’t already have a Kindle, you might want to go check out the Kindle family at Amazon. I have had the Kindle 2 with 3G for a couple of years now and love it! It's great for traveling too. I have a Kindle Fire on my wishlist but haven’t sprung for one yet. It has one drawback in my mind. The screen is like any other tablet or computer screen in that it's not readable outside. I can comfortably read my Kindle, with its e-paper technology, even at the beach in bright sunlight.
You don’t actually need a Kindle to read Kindle books! Surprised? Amazon offers several free reading apps. Currently, they are available for iPhone, Windows PC, Mac, Blackberry, iPad, Android, Windows Phone 7. They also have the Kindle Cloud Reader where you can read your books right in your web browser. With the advent of the Kindle Fire, a lot more books are coming out with color pictures and diagrams. I recently installed Kindle for PC so I can better view the books that don’t render so well on my Kindle. I like it even if it's not so portable. Here is a screenshot for those who have never used. You might give it a try.
Kindle Publishers: You might want to try a couple of these other methods of viewing Kindle books. Depending on how your readers are viewing your books, they might be seeing them differently that you are. While I do preview my books in Kindle Viewer before publishing, I find that not always way they look elsewhere, including on my own Kindle.
As long as we are looking for free books for our Kindle, let’s start with the home of the Kindle – Amazon. Amazon has over 50,000 Kindle books that are totally free! Amazon has a strong interest in providing a healthy selection of free (and cheap) titles in their Kindle store. Free books are a strong selling point. They keep Kindle owners coming back in huge numbers looking for more. And Amazon is well aware of this! What do you do when you go to Amazon? Most likely you were looking for something, and pretty soon you are looking at something else, and before you know it you have bought something! Even I have been guilty of buying a couple of Kindle books after looking through dozens of free ones.