Forgotten Books is a site that offers a great way to discover books. They offer a Free Book a Day, and cover many areas of interest. They also support many formats like iPad, Android, Windows Tablet, Kindle, .PDF, their own reader, and the opportunity to read online.
To register, click the Login/Register button near the top of the page. Then fill out the form with your name, e-mail address, a password, your gender and age, and some of your interests. Click either the Sign Up with Free Book of the Day, or the tinier ink Sign Up without Free Book of the Day, and then head over to your e-mail address and click the activation link in the e-mail they send you. Once you’ve clicked that link, you’ll need to choose your membership level. I picked Free.
The Free account level allows you to view up 85% of the books as viewable, and if you opted for the Free Book of the Day that will be 100% viewable. How I’m using this is to see if I’m going to use this service enough to justify the $2.99 level membership, which I think is a great deal, but I want to be sure I’m going to use it. If you know you’re never going to spend a dime on it, I think you can still use this service to find books you want to read (and then check out of your local lending library) or like desperate graduate students everywhere this is a great way to find books and gut them for projects (gutting is where you check out the introduction, any pertinent content, and then use the material you find that way – particularly great for classics).
Once you’ve picked Free, if you’ve opted out of the Free Book of the Day you’ll be asked if you want it again. The next selection is whether you want to connect your account to Facebook or Twitter. And then you’ll click the Introduction button. The Introduction gives you a walk through of the features on the site that you’ll get to use. Just scroll down the page to discover them all.
Another feature I think is really cool is the Image Search feature. I randomly tried it with the keyword “castles” and pulled up all kinds of interesting images. To navigate through them just scroll down and if you want to see more click the Show More button and it will load more images.
While not 100% free this site gives you a good taste at the free level to decide if it is something you’d like to pay for, and I’ve really been enjoying my free book of the day offering. Check it out for yourself.