An Encyclopedia of Ways to Get Cheap Books

Well all know that right now, times are tough. Money is ouchie. Pockets are beyond pinched.

So how are bookies supposed to get their fix without resorting to the library all of the time? Don’t get me the wrong, the library is epic. But sometimes I don’t want to wait the astronomical times that are required to secure the newest release.

If I’m jonesing for a book, I want that book.

Here are some ways to kick that book addiction in the ass and get your books without the horrendous wait because the library only has one physical copy and Karen has renewed it 16 times. Damn you, Karen!

This is my default site when I’m book hunting for books that don’t hurt my wallet. Not only can you pick the condition of your book, which determines the price, it’s all one shipping fee. So no 900 different fees, like when you buy from an infamous mega corp that turns your 19.99 price tag to $50 in shipping fees. Also, you get points that give you free books from $5 and up from any order or category. Win.


One thing to say: Free. Shipping. On. All. Orders. Done.

Amazon Used Books

I’m sure you have all used this option and were aware that the Jeff Empire offers the used book option with almost all of their regular and new books. If you haven’t used this magic yet, look down below any paperback or hardback option pricing for used book prices on Amazon.

Halfprice Books

This is a super new book place, at least to me, and I haven’t gone there because there isn’t one near me. Sadface. Clearly, it’s the world getting revenge for the weeping of my debit card whenever I set foot in a bookstore. So no half price books for me. Unless I order from them online, which is ALSO an option.

This got included because I see a ton of Booktuber’s shopping here and they seem to be fairly prevalent except for me. Hmph. FML. Either way, they have A LOT of options and good prices. Go forth and book binge, my friends.


Who doesn’t love a good ol’ standby? I’ve been using eBay for books since…well, longer than I would like to admit. But I mostly stick to buying book lots, which are groupings of books, rather than a single title. Mostly because a single title on here can be pricey depending on who’s doing the selling.

Library Sales

Although, right now, in-person sales aren’t super popular, there are still some states where you can go to your local library and buy their gently used books for a steal of a price. In high school, I used to wreak havoc on our school library sale. They would see me coming and hide, I swear.

But this is a great option for books from anywhere from .50 cents to $1.00 that are popular within the last year.

Garage Sales

I am a garage sale fiend. You never know what treasures you can find in terms of books. I once had someone sell me 3 full, huge boxes of basically new romances for $50 bucks. I thought I about died and hit the jackpot. I felt like I was pulling off a heist from Oceans 11.

Thank you, wonderful older lady, who made my book dreams come true!


This is another popular option like Thrift Books and Better World, cheap, well taken care of books with lots of new releases. Enough said.


A super handy tool, this site allows you to find a specific book or series ALL over the internet for the best price. The search engine works like the Google shopping of books.

Indie Bound

Indie Bound encourages readers to shop small business and local business by collecting and offering a one stop shop for all of a reader’s needs. You can use their handy as fuck Indie Bookstore Finder to buy that needed new release or for Christmas presents for friends and family.

For those who don’t subscribe to the Amazon’s of the world or prefer shopping outside Barnes and Noble, this is a kick ass option.

Kindle Unlimited

For a one time fee, which changes depending on Amazon specials, you can read e-books to your heart’s content through your KU subscription. As long as publisher has decided to make their book available through the KU service, you can read it and keep it for as long as it takes you to read it.

The only issue is that you can only have ten books out at one time. Which is a letdown when my library allows me to have 32 out at a time and it’s free. Think about it.

Free Public Domain Ebooks

Project Gutenberg is a collection of e-books and PDF’s that you can read, for free, whenever you would like on almost any device. All you have to do is download them. Which is helpful for anyone making their way through the classics or needing a specific classic for school. Their archives go all the way back in time to historical classics and documents.

Paperback Swap

An oldie, but a goodie. A fun little website for if you’re looking to shrink your shelves for a minimalist vibe, but you want to get a book for giving a book. This site matches up people who want to swap books.

Simple. Easy. Free except for shipping.


Bookmooch is pretty similar to Paperback Swap only you get points for sending people your books that they request, and then you use those points to buy other people’s books. It sounds a little more complicated than Paperback Swap, but I’ve never used it. So what the fuck do I know?


A website and message board that curates a bunch of local readers that are giving away books for free in your area. Super simple. Go on the site, find books, message, and pick ’em up. Done.

You’re welcome.


An app for your phone that shows people in your area who are giving away or selling their used books. You can find some really nice gems for cheap.

If you feel the need, the need to read, see what I did there? Then these are some of your best options for cheap, wonderful, happy reading times without having to pull a bank heist, find a sugar daddy, or go into debt.

Keep Reading Book Fam,


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