"What a blessing it is to love books." ~ Elizabeth von Arnim
While it's definitely nice to have physical copies of books that we get to keep forever, sometimes it's not sustainable to continuously keep buying new books. Yes, we know. It's very sad, but it's a reality we must all face. So how do we keep our TBR piles stocked without constantly breaking the bank? We got you covered! Here are some of the many ways we get our hands on some must-reads while also saving our wallets!
1. Kindle Unlimited
We cannot say it enough, but Kindle Unlimited is the best $10 a month both of us spend! You pay a monthly fee, or even find ways to get it free for a few months or a discounted rate, and you have access to a plethora of books! Bestsellers, #booktok recommendations, most popular books, and even classics and oldies. You can "borrow" up to 20 books at a time and as soon as you are done reading, return it and fill up your limit with something else! This is how both of us get to read as many books as we seem to because we can so easily get them through this subscription! If you read as much as we do, and enjoy reading either on your phone or an e-reader/tablet, then you have just found the best money saving way to get your hands on a ton of books!
Z-Library can be found by going to usa1lib.org or even z-lib.org. I (Kelli) cannot remember how I stumbled across this find a few years ago, but a find it is and we use it often! This is a website that houses thousands upon thousands of books for free! You can create an account and download a maximum of 5 books a day, and have it delivered to the Books app on your Apple phone, have it sent to your Kindle, or read as a pdf on your computer. Often times. when both of us are looking for a specific book, our pattern is to first check the library, then we go to Kindle Unlimited, and if it is not at either of these spots, we then go to the Z-Library and search for it... and we always find a copy here! This is a great way to get your hands on a current must-read!
If you love audiobooks, then Audible may be one way for you to save money. When you sign up, you can start a free trial, but how can you keep saving money once the trial ends? Well, you're technically charged every month for an Audible subscription, but you get one credit each month. When using Audible, we always make sure to research the books we want to use that credit on. First, look to see if the book is available at your library, and if it's only available to place on hold, can you wait that long for the book to become available? Two, how much is it to buy the book? Is it more than what you spent on that credit? If so, snatch that book up with that credit!
We recently just found out about Thriftbooks.com and y'all, we were way too excited. Not only do you get used books in good condition for cheap, but shipping is free on orders over $15! They also have Reading Rewards, which you rack up with every order and can eventually use toward a free book. Thriftbooks also sells new and antique books, which are sometimes less than the going price on other sites, but their best deals are on used books. And we don't know if this is a good or bad thing, but Thriftbooks lets you know when items on your wish list are available!
5. Raid Your Friends' & Family's Book Stash
We don't know about all of you, but this is one of the main ways we add to our ever growing book collection, and it's also a main way we clean out our bookshelves! We love swapping books with our family and friends. While a lot of our reading preferences are similar, there are also some books that we wouldn't have picked up if we didn't see it in the stack to be given away. It's even more fun when you have books you're looking to rehome and your friends or family are interested in adding them to their TBR piles! And if you get a friend or family member hooked on a series or even a specific author...maybe they will go out and buy more of their books and you can borrow them!
As always, the library will never fail you when looking to try and save money but also work on your ever growing TBR lists. Whether going to the library in person, or downloading the Libby app and borrowing an electronic copy of a book, the library is one of our go-tos when trying to save a buck! Obviously the library houses thousands of books to choose from, but the Libby app continues to grow and house a very large selection of books and audiobooks to borrow as well. We don't know about you, but when we make a library trip, we make it count and definitely check out quite a few books...we're talking in the double digits. :) In addition to borrowing books from the library, we do try to follow social media accounts for local libraries. Oftentimes, your local library will have a book sale at least once a year. Sometimes you pay one price for a bag and anything you can fit in it is yours, and other times they have a selection of books for sale for as little as 50 cents or even a dollar. It's a great way to support your local community and also get your hands on some great reads!
Again, I (Kelli) am not sure how I stumbled across this site, but it was the best find ever! Bookbub is another way to get your hands on free or discounted electronic books! We check this site out at least once a week and always seem to find a couple of reads to add to our Kindles. What is a very nice feature is you can select what type of electronic book you prefer (Kindle, Barnes and Noble, Apple Books, Google, and Kobo) to search for. Once you make your selection(s), you can just scroll through pages of books that are free for a limited time or offered at a fantastic discounted price! Since we are all about saving money, we tend to search for just the free books. All you need to do is create a free account, and then you can personalize it as much as you like by selecting favorite authors and genres. It offers recommendations based off of books and authors you have favorited and is just another awesome way to find new authors, books, and even series...and guess what, it can be as free or cheap as you want!
We love sharing some of our best secrets on how we work through our TBR lists while not breaking the bank (and we are sure our significant others are very appreciative of this! :) ). We hope we were able to introduce some new ways that you haven't seen or heard of before to find some discounted and even free books. What are some of the ways that you find discounted or even free books?
If you’d like to see what we are reading now, check out our Goodreads profiles (Kelli and Chelsea) or follow 2 Girls Bookin' It on Instagram and Facebook! If you’re excited to see what other topics we’ll be covering in the coming months, make sure to subscribe. Thanks for reading with us!