Back in 2019, I wrote a post titled ‘Where I get my books from’ in which I said that I got about half of my books from charity shops, a substantial number from the library and a smaller selection from other sources. So, is this any different now?
I get fewer books from charity shops now because I have less time to browse them, although I probably acquire a couple of books a month this way. I still borrow library ebooks fairly often, but it depends on what’s available on Borrowbox, as lately not much has appealed to me and I’ve DNFed many books from there lately. I don’t read as many ARCs / proof copies as I used to, just the occasional ones from NetGalley, Reedsy and provided by authors. I still buy very few books and when I do, I’m now more likely to buy an ebook as it’s usually much cheaper than a paperback.
The main difference is that perhaps half of my reading is now through Kindle Unlimited, which is a subscription library service to Kindle books on Amazon. I have written a post about whether KU is worth it here. The reason I read a lot of KU is partly because the more books I read, the better value the subscription is. It’s also because I like to support indie authors, many of whom have their books available on KU and receive royalties from pages read. Another reason is that there are unusual books on KU which would never find their way into mainstream publishing or libraries and I wouldn’t have discovered them otherwise. If you’ve followed my book reviews for a while, you’ll have noticed that I require variety in my reading. KU helps me to fulfill that.
Another source I didn’t mention the first time around was Project Gutenberg. I have been reviewing one book from there every month, each book selected from a list of randomly generated titles. It’s a great source of older books which are out of copyright and for every well-known classic there are many obscure books waiting to be rediscovered.
Have your sources of books changed? Where do you get the majority of yours from?