Posted by: beansai | May 20, 2008

The Wonderful World of E-Books

   While I generally love being able to hold a book in my hand and read it that way, I can’t deny the convenience and accessibility of e-books. And so I thought I would share a couple of sites with you all. The first one is a site where you can download free e-books in PDF format. I actually heard about this site Wowio from my good friend Skunkie. When I first took a look around Wowio, I didn’t have a lot of time to take much of a gander on the site or even create an account. And tonight, in hopes of finding something new to read, I finally set up an account and downloaded three books. Now of course, these books are technically free, but you do have to succumb to a page in the beginning of the file that is an advertisement for a company that has sponsored the book. Personally I find this to be nothing more than a minor (if even that) inconvenience. No, not even “inconvenience”. More of a slight annoyance that is so slight, I’m not sure why I am even bothering to mention it. That’s how big of a deal it isn’t. For a free book, I can handle one page of advertisement.

   Now PDF files are easy to take with you. Load’em up on a memory stick or email them to yourself so you can access them anywhere. There are even some mobile devices and such that allow you to read PDF files on them. Like my first generation iPod Nano. And also my iPhone, well, sort of. This brings me to another site I wanted to share with my fellow iPhoners that enjoy reading. I was browsing the Apple site one day for wep applications for the iPhone and stumbled across This application allows you to upload different document type files to their site and then access them from your iPhone. There is a free account that maxes out at 5mb, but there are also paid accounts. I find the free one to work just fine. It holds a few books and I think that is more than enough. I had originally hoped that my iPhone would allow me to read PDF files, but alas, no such luck. Then I had read that you could access PDF files through emails only on the iPhone, but that didn’t work for me either. So, needless to say, I was thrilled to find this web application as a substitute. I’ve already used it to read a book and I found it to function really well with the iPhone touch interface. The size of the text of the PDF document seemed a bit small at first glance, but in relation to other type on the iPhone, it actually wasn’t that big of a deal. Once I got it set up the way I liked, reading a book in worked nicely.

   Another site that I have enjoyed from time to time to get some free e-books is GirleBooks. Now the free e-books on this site are all by female authors and classical literature. It’s a great resource for classic literature by authors like the Brontë sisters, Jane Austen, Mary Shelley, George Eliot, Louisa May Alcott, etc.

   While I will probably always love holding a book in my hand, I also love the fact that these kind of literary resources are available to us. I think it’s a great way of getting literature out there and keeping up with our uber techie generations. I really hope you give these sites a good look and read a book. Also let me know if you’ve heard of any other e-book sites (free or not) that you think are worth a mention or other applications (for any device or OS) that aid in the reading of e-books.



  1. Free ebook places are great to get ebooks to read and you can find them all over the place like gutenberg.

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