Like many people in the world, I love reading a good book. With modern e-book technology, as well as more advanced e-book readers and computer tablets, the ability to gain access to free literature eBooks has become much more prominent. Free e-books are frequently given out on a variety of websites, with many of them not being particularly good. Fortunately, thanks in part to many literary works being produced prior to the implementation of copyright and trademark laws; many of these popular and free literature eBooks have managed to be given away at no cost because they are now in the public domain. In this article, I will be compiling 13 popular and free eBooks that can be downloaded for your reading pleasure. Of course, there are literally hundreds of similar e books available online; some of which I have also documented in a another article I have written titled The 10 Most Popular E-Books in the Classic Fiction Genre that are Free. Hopefully with all my writing on this topic, you will gain a lot of insight into some great well-known pieces of literary artwork.
1. Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery
This is one of the most read books of all time, and is especially popular among women and young girls. It has actually sold over 50 million copies, and is often used as a teaching aid in school districts in many countries. While it is currently marketed towards children, it is definitely a book that is approachable by the whole family. My mother and sister for the longest time were addicted to the book, the film adaptation, and the overall atmosphere portrayed within both. The book follows the story of an orphan girl who is purchased by a family that was expecting an orphan boy. The family decides to keep her, and her tale stems from this situation. It is interesting, and to own it in eBook format might just save you some money if you happen to need this book for school or some alternative reason in the future.
2. Grimms' Fairy Tales by The Brothers Grimm
This is actually a collection of generally short stories produced by The Brothers Grimm. Many of these stories seep into pop culture in so many ways, such as "Little Red Riding Hood," "Cinderella," "Hansel and Gretel," and so many others. There are over 200 short stories, most of them heavily praised by critics for centuries. There is enough content here to keep you occupied with works of folkloric fiction for at least a month (unless you are truly addicted to reading). I'd highly suggest for parents to read these stories with your children, as it can certainly make for some interesting discussion topics, as well as some nostalgia as we remember the many animated Disney movies (among other things) that have stemmed from these writings. A very cool and of course free eBook collection.
3. Moby Dick by Herman Melville
Anyone who picks up this book for free as an eBook will instantly make me jealous, as I once bought this book as a hardback book for $20 dollars! As you can see, having access to free literature eBooks to download ultimately will end up saving you a lot of money; and keep you thoroughly entertained. Originally published in the 1850's, Moby Dick is a story about "the whale" Moby Dick (which is highly anthropomorphized in this writing). Without spoiling any of the plot or major characters, this is a must have e-book download for those of you interested in animals, the ocean, sailing, and similar themes.
4. Aesops Fables by Aesop
Aesop is a literary writer who has his origins in Ancient Greece. Greek philosopher Socrates is said to have read his Fables, and even attempting to transcribe them into poetry. Strangely enough, even if you are not familiar with this collection of stories (the "fables"), you probably have heard of some of them as they frequently seep their way into modern folklore and pop culture. For example, the story of the "Boy Who Cried Wolf" is one of the fables written by Aesop. This story is frequently retold countless times by a variety of people children grow up, from parents to school teachers. While these stories are intended to use as moral guides for children, adults will certainly find something enjoyable in the writing as well. Aesop's Fables are a great tool if you are a parent as well. These are perhaps the most "family friendly" collection of stories you can get your hands on. Even though modern technology is changing and we can now get our hands on free electronic books, there is no need to forget the great writings of the ancients! Be sure to check this e-book out soon.
5. Paradise Lost by John Milton
Paradise Lost is written in the style of an epic poem. It is not a "novel," but it's story is one that has dominated the minds of many individuals from religious and non-religious backgrounds alike. It was originally released in 1667 and concerns itself heavily with the Fall of Man and story of Genesis (as accounted for in the Biblical Old Testament). Paradise Lost is frequently considered one of the "best literary works in the English language." Whether or not you are religious, you will find Paradise Lost to be a fantastic read; with it's descriptive imagery and interesting poetic style. This is a very long piece, but well worth the time spent reading it.
6. The War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells
H.G. Wells describes an apocalyptic scenario where Earth is attacked by aliens. While this may be a rather trivial premise today, it was one of the first of it's kind when it was originally released. Fortunately, The War of the Worlds is very well written; and it's popularity has soared in recent times thanks in part to multiple film adaptations, most recently one in 2005 simple titled "War of the Worlds" (directed and produced by Stephen Spielburg, and featuring Tom Cruise). One interesting tidbit I had read in the past with regards to this book is that, at one point H.G. Wells did an audiobook version of it which was played on the radio. At the time, it caused widespread hysteria and panic; and led to several deaths as people quite literally believed the end of the world was upon us, and aliens were attacking the Earth. If that seems ridiculous to you, check out the About page on the War of the Worlds Radio Broadcast. This is a book that quite literally changed the face of the planet, and the mindset of human beings on a large scale. It is definitely worth checking out both for it's writing and historical value.
7. The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving
This book is a short story, and while relatively short; it contains a very interesting narrative by far. I never read the e-book free literature eBook edition myself, but I do own a physical copy of the text. The story is very entertaining, with writing that is well done for its time. Without spoiling much of the story, you may very well be familiar with the image of the Headless Horseman (who lacks a head and replaces it with a carved pumpkin). The Legend of Sleepy Hollow has certainly motivated a few people to do film adaptations, the location of Sleepy Hollow (in upstate New York) is famous for this (and in searching the phrase "Sleepy Hollow" you will not find the actual book on the first page of Google). This short story has become something more then just a tale of American fiction. People love this story, for a variety of reasons I am sure. It is a free ebook, so I highly recommend you check it out. You could easily read through it in about a day or so.
8. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austin
Pride and Prejudice often finds itself at the top of "most loved" books lists, and for a good reason: it is deeply moving and discusses a range of topics including morality, marriage, manners, upbringing, and a variety of other things in a 19th century landscape. While this book may be pretty dry and dense to read, for those of you who can see past it's classical writing style; the story will probably steal your heart as it has done in so many people. If you want an alternative book with the same story (though for a price), I'd recommend checking out Pride and Prejudice and Zombies which is a new reincarnation of this tale (just with zombies of course). Like so many other classic stories, Pride and Prejudice has inspired movie adaptations, among other things.
9. The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling
I know about the Jungle Book thanks in great part to the old animated Disney film adaptation. I loved that cartoon, and it ultimately inspired me in my teens to check out this book for myself at a local library. The Jungle Book consists of an array of small stories, which are written as fables (in a similar manner as Aesop's Fables). Animals are anthropomorphized, and are used to teach moral lessons. I enjoyed this because of the rather bizzare stories, such as "Rikki-Tikki-Tavvi" which is a story about a heroic mongoose. This is worth checking out, even more so if you have children who need to learn some lessons in morality.
10. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Caroll
Who here has not heard of Alice in Wonderland? If you have not, then you are either very young or have been living under a rock for most of your life. Many will know of this story thanks, yet again, to film adaptations throughout the year. From the original Disney movie adaptation to a more recent stylized one featuring Johnny Depp (among other actors). I will save discussion of this one as I am sure you have heard about it, but to give a brief overview it follows the adventures Alice who falls down a rabbit hole; and ends up in a fantasy world filled with many strange creatures. Definitely worth checking out!
If you liked this article, be sure to check out some of my other articles like The 10 Most Popular E-Books in the Classic Fiction Genre that are Free and 13 Android Tablet Apps that make Purchasing a Tablet Computer Worthwhile. I love free literature ebooks, and hope you find my articles to be a great resource in finding new things to read. Also, leave a comment below if you feel like it too!