Book lovers no longer need have "service envy" toward Hulu Plus and Netflix customers who can binge on endless TV. You're getting a similar service of your very own!
Try these affordable e-book services
Oyster is a new service for e-book readers that offers unlimited books on an all you can eat monthly subscription model.
For $9.95 each month, you get access to about 100,000 titles. To give you a sense, a typicall e-seller could have up to a couple million titles for sale. So Oyster has some catching up to do, but I'm sure they'll get agreements with publishers in place soon.
The Oyster service is available for Android, iOS, the Kindle Fire, and web reading. In some of the media reports I've read, it's been called a "Netflix for books."
I think $9.95 is a buck or two too high, but the marketplace will ultimately decide. This service could work well for avid book readers, particularly if you read a book or more a week. You'd only pay a little more than $100 for a whole year's worth of digital books.
Scribd is another competitor operating in the same marketspace, charging $8.99 a month for unlimited reads. Amazon also has its own service called Kindle Unlimited at $10 a month, but reviewers don't seem to like and it's been plagued by a lot of problems.
Finally, I've also read about a service called Entitle Books that lets you download 2 e-books a month for $10, but you get to keep the books forever -- with the other services, you're really just renting the e-books for a period of time.
FREE OPTION: If you prefer your e-books for free, check out Overdrive.com which was suggested to me by a caller. Overdrive works with local library systems to do free e-book lending.
Of course, some people still love the tacit appeal of a physical book, but others love reading on a tablet or even a larger screen smartphone.
Meanwhile, don't forget to check out my latest book, Clark Howard's Living Large for the Long Haul. It has the stories of 50 Americans who can show you how to live below your means while living life to the fullest, and I've included 200 money-saving tips to help pack a punch in your wallet.
Want your own turn at being an author? See my self-publishing guide and get started today!