Saturday, September 04, 2010

Free e-Books for Homeschoolers

I've been wanting a Kindle forever but just couldn't bring myself to spend the money. I asked for it for my last birthday but then pulled the request as I just thought that maybe it was too frivolous. You know -- Want vs. Need.

However, now I'm completely rethinking the whole thing.

As a homeschooler, I use a lot of classic books. A LOT. And most of them can be found for free download on the internet. I have take advantage of some of these free books but not much as I'd like as it isn't easy to read on my computer. Reading on a Kindle (and I imagine other book readers are similar) really is much like reading a regular book. You can even make annotations in the columns and highlight passages. I do love real books. My home is decorated in Early Library but maybe it is time to enter the modern age. At least a wee bit.

Yes, I know there is the public library and I do take great advantage of it. In fact, I have a daughter who works at the library and I often enlist her to do my library grunt work. But there are times when even the classics are hard to get via inter-library loan. (Our small town library didn't even offer inter-library loan until a few months ago!) Or I need a book for an entire semester or I need it quick.

Anyway, with all those free books out there I think the Kindle would pay for itself easily in less than a year. Now, all my geek friends tell me to forget the Kindle and go for an i-Pad but I really, really can't bring myself to spend that kind of money. Cha-ching, cha-ching!!!

So, the whole point of this blog post was to share links to all those free books with you. Let's get to it ...

Baldwin Online Children's Literature Project

Bringing Yesterday's Classics to Today's Children
. We're using this currently for our Ancient Greece and Rome books including Famous Men of Greece and Famous Men of Rome.

Christian Classics Ethereal Library

From Calvin College, loaded with lots of Church Fathers and Catholic saints. It even has large selections from Summa Contra Gentiles
. I've downloaded Chesterton and others here.

Google Books

In addition to classics, authors have uploaded current books. Also magazines.

Gutenberg Project

THE original producer of free e-books.
Over 100,000 books.

Heritage History

Similar Baldwin Project, only dedicated exclusively to children's history books

Internet Archive


Free audio books!

Literature Page

The Literature Page is your place to read classic books, plays, stories, poems, essays, and speeches online, brought to you by the creators of The Quotations Page. Our collection currently includes 243 works from 89 authors. We add new titles regularly.

Many Books

All free books in a wide variety of genre. They contain books from Project Gutenberg, and has links to Librivox when available. You can download them already converted to a variety of formats if you don't want to go through Calibre.


This site absolutely has things you will not find anywhere else.

TextKit: Resources for Greek and Latin

Our Latin textbooks for this year are from this website.

As with any book, make sure anything you download is acceptable. Even classics contain trash.

I'll put these links up in the sidebar here at the blog so you find them there in the future.

Happy reading!!!


Margaret Mary Myers said...

Thank you for sharing all those resources, Maureen!

I enjoyed your comment that your house is decorated in Early Library. :)

Alexis C. said...

Hi, Maureen! We've chatted once or twice over e-mail (I live not too far from you and am a Catholic home-schooler in training!), and just happened to see a link to your blog on a forum I was visiting.

At any rate ... to get to the point! ...I have a Kindle and LOVE it! You truly can find just about -any- classic book for it for free somewhere. I can't recommend it enough. Incidentally, now wouldn't be a bad time to buy a used one, as the new Kindle 3 just came out, and I bet a lot of Kindle 2 users are selling theirs :)

Michelle said...

Thanks for the resources! You might also talk to your library about getting Kindles. Our little town library just got a handful of them to loan out. They were actually donated by the Lion's Club by request of the librarian. Good luck!

Anonymous said...

I just got a Nook and I absolutely love it! I can bring our "school" on vacation and download free books on the 3G network!

S Furry said...

Another website is It has public domain books and free self-publications.

Daniel Callahan said...

I've begun a new edition of Euclid's Elements, which was _the_ beginning math textbook in much of the world for over 2200 years. The Elements still has the ability to convey basic geometry and the notion of mathematical proofs in a powerful way. It's available as a free download at