Free and bargain-priced e-books are a good way to try a new author, but what if you don’t have time to troll the various e-book retailers looking for the latest available freebies? Likewise, it can be time-consuming to check multiple retailers for the best price on a title you’re interested in. Luckily, there are others willing to do the work.
Books on the Knob is a blog dedicated to “Bargain reads, free ebooks and book reviews for the Amazon Kindle, nook, Kobo, Sony and other ereaders”, and that’s exactly what the anonymous blogger offers: a heads-up on free and bargain titles as they become available, complete with product description and where to find the book. The blog started with a focus on Kindle books, and there remains a bias toward Kindle, but owners of other devices will find plenty to interest them, as well. Not all titles reviewed are available in every format; some are only available for Kindle or nook, for instance, or restricted to UK customers. The blog is not exhaustive, but it is certainly useful if you’re in the market for free and bargain-priced e-books — and the blog author covers a wide array of genres. Today, for instance, the blog alerts readers to free editions of a Ken Blanchard business book, an LGBT romance, a modern translation of the New Testament, a paranormal mystery, a general-fiction novel, and an assortment of other titles.
Inkmesh.com is an e-book search engine which serves several functions. It offers links to and lists of the free titles at most of the leading retailers (Kindle, Barnes & Noble’s nook store, the Sony Reader bookstore, Kobo, Smashwords, and Baen Publishing). Inkmesh also allows you to search on any title or author, and can point you to the best price available in various e-book formats. You can limit searches by device, price, or rating. You can also browse by subject area or genre. It’s an invaluable search engine, and has saved me both time and money on more than one occasion. For instance, a recent search shows that Sony has the best price on Patrick Rothfuss’s The Wise Man’s Fear ($12.99), while BooksOnBoard offers the lowest price for The Name of the Wind ($7.99), the first book in the same series.
Incidentally, Inkmesh also searches for downloadable audiobooks; I haven’t used this function yet, since I tend to borrow audiobooks from the library, but if I were purchasing an audiobook file, I would certainly comparison shop at Inkmesh.