Quick Tip to Read More in the New Year!

Ah, that lovely time of year when we are all so motivated and pure. If you’re like me, you probably have been setting a hefty reading goal for yourself every year. Maybe you lowballed your goal once and read some impossible percentage of books. Good for you. Or maybe, you failed horribly (goal-wise, at least) and read far less than you wanted to.

For those of you who are sticking with the goals this year, here’s a quick little tip for reading a LOT more this year: read before bed. Even if it’s just 10 minutes of reading, do it.

I’d personally recommend you opt for a real, physical book for this method. Yes, those still exist. For one, this is the perfect way to unwind, de-stress, and relax before bed. There are no bright phone or computer screens messing with your brain’s ability to fall asleep; it’s just you and a story. And then plus number two is that this is extra reading time you don’t need to schedule! You have absolutely no excuses! And this extra reading = more books read this year. Score!

Perhaps this tip is fairly obvious to you, but some people just have not given it a try. Do it! You’ll love it! (But maybe stay away from the Stephen King books, at least at night. Just a suggestion.)

While we’re on the topic of resolutions, I’ll let you know what my “hefty reading goal” is for the year: 75 books. I know, breathe in, breathe out. That’s a lot. For the average person, that’s probably a lifetime of books. But I think I’m up for the challenge this year. *suits up for the ultimate reading battle*

So tell me, what are YOUR reading goals this year? Are you setting one on Goodreads, or foregoing that altogether?  Let me know in the comments below!

Reading Online for Free!

Hands up, who loves having to pay for ebooks? Probably nobody. And no, I’m not advocating pirating books. Please please please don’t ever do that! Writers work tirelessly to write and publish those books! I’m talking about finding legally free books online. Come see!

If you’ve ever done some research on free books, you’ve probably come across Project Gutenberg, screenshot shown below. Now, Project Gutenberg is massive, which is great, (46,000 titles!), but it’s not the most aesthetically appealing site to browse. Not to mention it contains only ebooks, not audio books.

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That’s where LoyalBooks (formerly BooksShouldBeFree) comes in. This site posts the etexts/kindle books from Project Gutenberg, but also gives you the Librivox audio book recordings and various mediums for downloading the text. It’s pretty much your one stop shop. Just don’t expect to find any Suzanne Collins here; these are only books that are in the public domain. Ever need a text for your literature class? You might find it here.

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And of course, there’s good old Amazon’s free Kindle book selection. On top of having the classics, they also carry some contemporary free books, for limited amounts of time. (A book that’s normally $9.99, hypothetically, may become free as part of a sale, so if you’re interested, snatch it up before the price goes up again!)

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Some of Amazon's free book selection

Google Play has some free ebooks sometimes as well, but even if a book you want isn’t free, they let you download a free sample of almost anything before you shell out any money towards it.

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Some of the top free books on Google Play.

If reading actual published books isn’t a necessity, you’ll find a treasure trove of amazing books (some of which do get picked up and published by publishing houses!) on Wattpad. You can read Wattpad books through their free app or on their website. What’s nice is you can add titles to your “library” and get notifications when your favorite stories get updated.

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The Discover page of the Wattpad app.

And of course, if you live in the United States, you should ask your local library if patrons have access to something called Overdrive as part of the library system. Overdrive lets a patron with a library card from certain libraries log in and “check out” ebooks and audio books.  The books are the same ones you might find in the actual library; all contemporary books (fiction, nonfiction, whatever it be for all ages). Some libraries offer similar services like Freading, so its worth asking.

What’s your favorite free legal eBook site? Do you read ebooks? Let me know in the comments below!

Follow me @books_palettes for sneak peeks, musings, and more! My avatar image is from “Jen Loves Teaching.”