Want free books for your kids? Reading is so much fun, especially when you can enjoy those books for a song (even when you can’t hum a tune). Because you’re always looking for the next, great read, enjoy these book opportunities for freebies (and a couple of cheapies), from A-Z (well, A-W).
1. Amazon Kindle
Free, then $9.99/mo.
Amazon offers millions of things, including ghost pepper sauce that’ll melt your intestines (hot) and free Kindle downloads (even hotter)! All you need to score the latest kids’ books is a Kindle-reading device (download the app here for Windows, Mac or your smart phone) and you’re good to go.
Digital bliss: Sign up for a 30-day free trial of Kindle Unlimited, and you get access to thousands of children’s book for free (a $9.99 value)!
Free for 30 days, $14.95 thereafter
Audiobooks are cheaper than buying the hottest releases (for the price of one book, you almost get an entire month of audio books). Plus, not only does Audible offer up the first 30 days of its service for free, for less than $15 a month, you gain access to over 180,000 titles you can listen to with your kids while running errands or on your morning walk.
That’s what she read! Sign up and score a free audiobook a month and 30% off of additional books.
3. Early Moments Book Clubs
Cost varies, free shipping
Kids love to learn, and Early Moments book clubs make it cheaper than ever to score some fun books with characters kids love. You get some free books in the introductory bundle (you just pay shipping). As an example, with Dr. Seuss, you get 5 books for $5.95. Check it out!
Yes, you can(cel): You can cancel before the trial period is up and keep the books if you find the program isn’t for you.
Free and discounted ebooks
BookBub is a great, free, online service that connects book lovers with free and deeply discounted ebooks. When you subscribe, BookBub sends out regular emails to alert you of daily free and deeply discounted eBooks. Or browse their site and find books you can download and read absolutely free (or at deeply discounted rates). Bookbub keeps you in the know by sharing deep discounts on acclaimed ebooks in daily, targeted emails based on the types of books you choose to get notified about. With categories ranging from mysteries to cookbooks, and stores from Amazon to Apple iBooks, when publishers offer deals, you’re in for one happy ending.
A real page-turner: Buy 2 $.99 ebooks a month, and over the course of the year you’ll save at least $200 over conventional books! You can save up to 90%, since BookBub only accepts books that offer at least 50% off the cover price (many are discounted as much as 90%, and some are free).
Related:Watch Kids’ TV for Free!
Sell for free, then buy more at a discount
De-clutter your gently-used, well-loved books to make room for new adventures. Thankfully, BookScouter’s free service compares prices from 57 book-buying websites so you quickly and easily find who’s paying the most for books (and where you can buy more cheapest). Whew. Now you can enjoy traveling to new lands, all from your child’s imagination!
App-solutely: Their simple, easy-to-use mobile app lets you compare prices on the go.
Shipping cost only on books you send out
With graphics as cute as their offerings are numerous, Bookmooch is simple. First, you create an account and list the books you own that you’re willing to send to someone else. When your book is requested, you mail it at your cost. Then you can request a book from anyone else on the site for free!
Ship to my lou: Depending on the book swapping rules, you can expect to get about two books for every book you send.
7. Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library
Free to participating communities
In this program, Dolly Parton wanted to instill a love of reading. As a result, every month she sends a brand new, age appropriate book to every participating child under 5 years. If your community is a registered participant in this amazing program, it pays for the books and mailing, promotes the program, registers the children, and enters the information into the database.
Parton ways: Check to see if your community is listed here! If it is, sign up!
8. Better World Books
Discounted books, all ship free
Better World Books operates under the premise that business can use its power to create positive change in the world. Collecting and selling books online, BWB then donates books and funds literacy initiatives worldwide. With more than 8 million new and used titles in stock, this self-sustaining company creates social, economic, and environmental value for the community. What’s more, shipping is free!
Write on: Check their Bargain Bin and score great deals (like 3 books for $10).
9. Facebook Groups
Costa a little time (sometimes your sanity). Otherwise, free.
Are you using Facebook? If so, search for parents or mom groups and see what you can find. Often you’ll discover book swappers and other parents giving away books. You might even meet your son’s (or daughter’s) new playdate!
Book Face: For safety reasons, don’t meet strangers at your house. Opt for a public parking lot or busy park instead—especially where kids are involved.
10. Freecycle and Craigslist
A great way to meet your neighbors and score some freebies in the process, Freecycle’s mission is to rehome gently used items to keep them out of the landfills. Craigslist’s “Free” section is much the same idea, executed on a slightly larger scale.
Free advice: You’re more likely to score free books on Freecycle, since Craigslisters typically use the site for sales over freebies and swaps.
11. Little Free Library
Have you ever seen those adorbs little wooden boxes outside with books in them? Little Free Library was a movement started by Todd Bol to share his gently loved books with his Hudson, Wisconsin, community. The rule: Borrow a book and bring it back (or donate your own).
Little (free) tip: Want to install your own Little Free Library? Check with your local authorities first so you don’t get hit with unexpected fines or neighbor complaints.
12. The (Actual) Library
Free (and nearly free)
Don’t give me that look. I know libraries are technically free, but there’s more than borrowing going on. Some local libraries offer a donation center where families leave books they’ve outgrown, and you can pick them up for free. Other libraries sell excess books once or twice a year.
Buy me a river: Wait until the final day of Library Book Sales, as they often give the remaining books away for free (or for a super cheap deal). I once scored 20 books for $5—that’s only $.25 cents a book!
Related:Kids Bored? How to Have Fun!
13. Amazon Trade-In
Free to sell back (then buy more)
Selling your gently loved books means earning anywhere from a couple of bucks to hundreds of dollars as credit on Amazon. In fact, based on my past orders, Amazon shows me I could earn up to $657 from trading in my used books. From there, I can buy more books that are age-appropriate for my growing kids.
Swap it like it’s hot: Sometimes it’s better to privately list your books instead of trading them in. Compare the quality of your book with private sellers on the site and see if it’s worth it.
14. What’s on My Bookshelf
Cost is on shipping for books you send
Using a simple points system (based on value of the book cost new) members using What’s On My Bookshelf exchange books and wish lists with other members. Users who register 5 books on the site receive an extra point as an incentive.
Shelf love: When you add books, write your own descriptions (or use a commercial description), but remember: the better a description, the more likely an individual is to request your books.