Building Your Online Library

Discussion in 'Reading & Writing' started by Yvonne Smith, Mar 3, 2015.

  1. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    One of the best things about reading with an e-reader or tablet is being able to accumulate a large library, and never having to pack it around of you move, or need another bookcase to hold it all.

    Cloud storage has completely revamped having books actually stored in your e-reader. I keep my online books stored in the Cloud, and then download what i want to read. Of course, the e-reader itself holds several thousand books, so even if I didn't store them online, there would be plenty of room to build a library.

    Kindle apps and Adobe reader are available for just about any kind of computer or tablet that you use. My preference is the Kindle app, but I think the Adobe reader works fine, too.

    The Kindle store is probably the best place to build your library. Not only do they have a huge amount of e-books, they also put them on sale, and even mark them down to free on some days.
    Suppose you want to acquire books about gardening, just as an example. You would put in "gardening" as the search, and then run the results by price, low to high.

    All of the currently free books will show up first, then the 99 cent ones, and so on. If you set up a one-click buying on your Amazon account, then you just choose that, and the book is instantly added to your library.

    Every day, the free books change; so you should check fairly often to see what new ones are free. I have gotten books that normally were $10 or more , because they were free that day.

    Another great place for cheap and free books is called Bookbub.com. You register at the website and fill out the information about the kinds of books that you are interested in, and you can be as broad or as specific as you choose in your selection. Bookbub will then send you emails with information about those books that are on special, and fit your catagories. You can also choose where you want to buy books from, such as Amazon, iBooks, Barnes and Noble, or most any other onkine bookstore.

    Adobe has what is called The Gutenburg Project, and they have put almost all of the old classical books online and you can read them for free. As an example, if you have been yearning to read (or re-read) Jules Verne's classical book, Journey to the Center of the Earth; you can find it on Gutenburg. They have lists and lists of these older books, and they are all free to read. If you are looking for a book that is no longer in print, this is also where you are likely to find it.

    Last, but not least, is your own online library from any large city/county library near you where you can get a library card. Once you register and get the library card, ask the librarian what you need to do to check out e-books (and audio-books).

    Then, download the Overdrive app for your laptop or tablet, and make an account and link it with your library account. (this sounds complicated; but it is not)

    Once you have this installed, you can browse the available e-books, and if they are not immediately available, you can put yourself on the list to check it out when it becomes available, just like at the regular library. They book will be checked out for 1-2 weeks, and then will simply "disappear" from your library. This is a mixed blessing. One the positive side, you will never have an overdue library book that you have to pay a fine for. The other side is that, if you have not finished the book, it disappears anyway. Then, you have to get back on the list, and wait for it to come available and check it out all over again , in order to finish the last few pages.

    Libraries are adding to the amount of available e-books all of the time; so the ones that are available to read online will continue to grow.

    There are other places online where you can find free books. If you type in the name of the book, and add "free" in the search engine; it will show any place online that has that particular book for free. I have only listed the main ones here, but there are other places to find free books if you search for them.
     
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  2. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    Many of the classics are among the free books you can get through the Kindle store, too.
     
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  3. Allie Seay

    Allie Seay Active Member
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    Bookbubs must be like OHFB (One Hundred Free Books). I get an email every evening with the OHFB picks of the day. Some books are deeply discounted, which is also good, but most are free. I think in the last year I've actually spent money buying one lone book. And most of the freebies I've chosen are as yet unread. Like yours, Yvonne, they are sitting on a cloud shelf somewhere just waiting for me to download them.

    http://ohfb.com/blog/free-discount-...ail&utm_term=0_b068e15cd4-dd2aa25b92-36063361
     
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  4. Sarah Price

    Sarah Price Member
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    These sound like great tips. I will definitely check out Bookbubs and OHFB as well. I have a Kindle and I've pretty much switched over to buying virtual copies of books rather than hard copy because the price is always better. Another thing I do if I am considering buying a book is to order it from my state library. It gets delivered for free to my local library and I can check it out for a couple of weeks to see if I really want the book. If I do, then I can buy it at amazon. If I don't then I didn't waste any money on a book. There are quite a few books that sound really great online but they just don't fulfill my expectations once I get a copy and start reading.
     
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  5. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    I found yet another great place to add to your online library from Amazon Kindle Books. It is called "Kindle Buffet", and it lists books that are either free or on special every day. It is similar to the Bookbub program, except that Buffet does not send you out a list every day, you just go and look on their website and download any books that you want.
    The only source for these books is Kindle; but I have discovered that they show me different books than Bookbub sends out for me to look at; so I think it is a good idea to check both of them.
    Here is the link. It is called "weber books" , but it is actually the Kindle Buffet webpage.


    http://www.weberbooks.com/kindle/
     
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  6. Michelle Stevens

    Michelle Stevens Active Member
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    I guess I'm old fashioned but I still prefer reading paper books. However I've got a small collection of free books I've downloaded for "Kindle for PC". Unfortunately I've never found time to read any of them, so I wasn't really looking for more. But I went to look at Kindle Buffet anyway (thanks @Yvonne Smith ) and downloaded a Knitting Box Set. Hopefully that will push me to make something a bit more challenging than the basic beanies I've been knitting for charity lately. I'll be visiting the site to see if there's more of interest in future. Maybe that will finally make me stop buying more paper books all the time and cluttering the house with books I'll never find time to read.
     
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  7. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    Michelle, I was really looking at that set of knitting books, too ! I may go back and download it yet myself.
    If you go to the Kindle store and do a search for knitting or crochet, they have other free books as well, and some have patterns in them.
    I try to remember to check for new ones on there.
    The search function is what I like best, because if you want to find gardening books, cook books, health-related books, or just about anything else; it is extremely easy to do. I usually run the search by price low to high to see all of the free ones first; but i also like to search by relevancy so that i don't miss anything good just because of price.
     
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  8. Sarah Price

    Sarah Price Member
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    Another great source. I will have to check it out. I do have a Kindle. It is hard though to find the time to read books. My sister says she reads several books a week! I have NO idea how she finds the time to do that. She is also writing her own series of books.
     
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  9. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    Kindle has a free reading app that will work with any computer, laptop, or iPad . I think it also works with any other tablet or smart phone. You just download the free Kindle app to your device, and then you can read any of Amazon's multitude of books on any device that you have; so it is NOT necessary to even own a Kindle to use bookfinders like Bookbub or Kindle Buffet.
    For several years, I did not have a Kindle, and read all of the books on my ipad Kindle app. However, for reading a book, I do prefer the size of the Kindle. My iPad is larger and heavier, and the iPhone is too small to even try and read on comfortably (at least for me).
     
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  10. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    OK, Guys.....So, I was browsing around on a Kindle Fire forum this afternoon, and someone had recommended another good site to find cheap/free ebooks at. It is called E-reader IQ, and I was just looking it over. It has topics you can choose from , just like the Kindle store does, and looks like it might be a very good website to add to "favorites" and browse for books.
    Here is the link:

    http://www.ereaderiq.com
     
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  11. Pat Baker

    Pat Baker Well-Known Member
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    I have used both the Kindle and Adobe on my phone or tablet to read my books. As mentioned earlier they are both good. I do still like to have a book in my hands and turn the pages. I also like the audio books when I need to do alot of typing, my hands are busy but I can listen to the story.
     
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  12. Michelle Stevens

    Michelle Stevens Active Member
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    @Yvonne Smith Thanks for another useful link. Between the two you've provided, I've found quite a few free books that look really interesting. Now I just need to find time to read them.

    I think I'll need to invest in either a Kindle or a tablet now as I really don't want to spend all my reading time stuck at my computer.
     
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  13. Pat Davis

    Pat Davis Active Member
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    Thanks so much for all the information and websites for kindle books, Yvonne, and the OHFB info and website, Allie.
    Very much appreciated. :) I had been using my ipad like you were, Yvonne, and it was heavier, so I bought a Kindle
    Whitepaper e-reader and I really like it. I have been getting library ebooks books too.
     
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  14. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    Pat, I did that exact same thing. The little Kindle e-reader is perfect for reading paperback-type of books; but when I had a book that had illustrations in it; then it was a problem because they were only in black and white, and you can't stretch them to see them larger like you can on the iPad.
    Next, I saved up and found a used Kindle Fire ($50) on ebay and bought that. It is a little tiny bit larger than the e-reader; but works fine with illustrated books or recipes, or anything that has pictures. I gave the e-reader to my friend, Joyce McGregor, and she uses it for reading "paperback" novels. Since it is so lightweight, she can hold it , even with having one bad arm from a fall and breaking it.
    Then, I saved up again, and just got a Kindle Fire HD, ($50) which also has bluetooth; and is again, just a tiny bit larger than the plain Kindle Fire.
    So....I am now instructing Joyce in the use of a Kindle Fire for online, so she doesn't have to try and carry around her old dinosaur laptop (it weighs a TON !) Even though the Kindle Fire does not have an external keyboard, it still has to be better than trying to use the heavy laptop.
    Since I have the external kepboard for my iPad; I still use that for everything except reading, and it is almost like having a mini-laptop.

    Another thing that I really like about reading with an e-book reader is that you can change the print to the size you want it , and not be stuck with the size that comes with the book like when you buy a printed one.
     
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  15. Pat Davis

    Pat Davis Active Member
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    Very interesting, Yvonne. How is the size of a Kindle Fire HD compared to an ipad?
     
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  16. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    The Kindle Fire is just a little larger and heavier than the e-reader version. It would almost fit in the cover that I had for the e-reader; but not quite, so the difference is slight, but it is heavier. The Fire is probably close to the same size as an iPad mini is.
    The mini would probably do the same thing as the Kindle Fire. My reasons for choosing the Fire over the mini were that the Kindle was MUCH cheaper. You would never find a working ipad of any size for $50. The second reason was because I have Amazon Prime, and one of the features is what they call the Amazon Lending Library. You can borrow many of the books listed on Amazon through the lending library; but only if you have an actual Kindle, and not just the Kindle app on another brand of tablet.
    With the lending library, you can borrow a book for as long as it takes to read it; but only one book at a time, and only one per month. However, you can borrow and read some books that are expensive to buy. Plus, it is a good way to read the book and see if you even want to buy it.
     
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  17. Richard Paradon

    Richard Paradon Well-Known Member
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    Some great info from a lot of members! Just one more reason why I love Seniors Only! I still not bought a reading device as I am sure I will fall asleep reading and wind up with a bloody nose.
     
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  18. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    My wife has a Fire HD and I have a regular Kindle, which I prefer for reading since it's more like reading regular text in a book, while reading a book on a Kindle Fire is more like reading a book on a small computer. I had a first generation Kindle, which I actually liked best, since it had actual buttons to push in order to advance pages, while my newer Kindle uses a touchscreen, and sometimes (often) advances further than I want it to, and sometimes brings up screens that I never intended to bring up, but my older Kindle broke when I dropped it a few weeks ago. On the negative side, a regular Kindle does not display graphics well, even in a book, and there isn't much that can be done with it outside of book reading.

    My wife has a Kindle Fire, which she likes, but she spends more time playing games on it than reading. The Kindle Fire is more like a small computer, expanding the limits of what can be done with it. I believe the Kindle Fire displays graphics better in books as well. On the negative side, from my point of view, is that there is a back-light (like a computer) that I find uncomfortable, so I don't think that I would enjoy reading books on it any more than I would on my computer. Plus, while I would sometimes make use of distractions like games and such, I always regret having done so later.
     
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  19. Michelle Stevens

    Michelle Stevens Active Member
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    @Ken Anderson , you make a great argument for keeping it simple and buying a regular Kindle. I've managed to overcome my addiction to computer games by ensuring that I never play them at all, but I'm sure that I'd find something to distract me if I was reading on a tablet and that's not a good thing. I'm guessing that where graphics were important I'd stick to paper books, but if not, I'd still have the luxury of being able to view those using Kindle for PC if necessary.
     
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  20. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    Reading back-lit text, like on a computer, doesn't bother some people. But, although I am behind my computer all day, I don't find it comfortable to read long texts, such as a book, on my computer, and a Kindle Fire is sort of like that. The regular Kindle is as comfortable as reading the text on a book, plus it allows you to enlarge the text if you want to.
     
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  21. Pat Davis

    Pat Davis Active Member
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    That is the same as the Kindle Whitepaper, Ken...you can enlarge the text if you want to, and you can change the brightness from bright to low. I haven't tried it outside yet, but read that it is easy to read outside with it too.
     
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  22. Richard Paradon

    Richard Paradon Well-Known Member
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    Since I am totally ignorant of these devices, do you down load books from the internet? To use one, do you need to be on line? And last but not least, what is a typical price for one of these devices?
     
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  23. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    I usually get my books from Amazon, at the Kindle store, Richard; but there are a lot of places online that have e-books. You do need to be online to rent/buy the book, but once you have it downloaded on your reader or tablet, then you can read it anywhere and without being online. They have what is called "cloud storage", so you can actually leave the books stored that way, and only need to download the ones you are reading. Most of the e-readers will hold a whole lot of books; but I find it easier to just have the ones that i am reading on the device.
    Price is going to vary a whole lot, depending on what you buy, and whether you get a new or used one.
    A new e-reader from Amazon is about $100, maybe less when they are on sale. I bought mine used on e-bay, and paid $20 for it.
    If you decide to get a regular tablet instead of just an e-reader, then the cost will be a lot more because it has the internet capabilities as well as just being an e-reader.

    I didn't think that anything could replace actually holding a book in my hands and reading it; but once you use an e-reader, they have a lot of benefits. They weigh less than a paperback book, and are small and flat; so very easy to hold. You can set the print size to whatever works best for you, as opposed to a regular book where most of them are just one size of print.
    You can stop reading, and when you open it up, it automatically goes right to the page where you stopped reading.
    You can highlight parts of the book if you want to, as well.
    My Kindle also has a built in dictionary, and if there is a word which I don't know the meaning of, I touch the word with my finger, and it tells you what it means, just like looking it up in the dictionary.

    I used to make trips to the thrift stores and browse through their books, looking for good books to read, and then traded with my friend Joyce McGregor after we finished the books we bought. Eventually, I would end up taking books back to the thrift store again, or giving them away.
    Now, I can browse for books online, and most of the ones that i get are free, or very cheap.
    Personally, I really enjoy using the online books, and I think that once a person gets used to the idea of it; there are a lot of good features and benefits. You can look at the Kindle bookstore on Amazon and get an idea of the volume of e-books that are available just from that source.
    Here is a quick look at just the basic kindle e-reader so you can see how it functions.

     
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  24. Richard Paradon

    Richard Paradon Well-Known Member
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    Thanks, Yvonne! It seems like it just may go onto my "wants" list for next month.
     
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  25. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    I think that you will be glad that you got it, once you start using the Kindle. If you are just reading novels/paperback types of books; the e-reader will be perfect.
    If you read illustrated bookks, how-to manuals, cookbooks, gardening (smile) , or any other books with diagrams or pictures; then it is worth your while to get the Kindle Fire, so you have color and better pictures.
    My daughter loves to cook from recipes, and she finds the recipe on the internet, and has a clip on her cupboards in the kitchen, and she just clips up her tablet with the recipe on it.
    You can also watch movies/youtube videos or listen to music if you get the Kindle Fire; so it just depends on what all you will be using it for, which one will work best for you.
    I started out with the e-reader, and then upgraded because I was reading books with illustrations, and could not see the pictures very well (and not in color) ; so for my purposes , the tablet was a much better choice.

     
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