17 free books to download on Kindle and Apple Books right now

17 free books to download on Kindle and Apple Books right now

David Carnoy / CNET

Do you know what is good? Buying a book for a cup of coffee. Do you know what is good? Get a classic book for free. Thanks to the magic of the public domain, there are many books you can read for exactly $ 0 on both Amazon Kindle StoreAmazon Kindle Store and Apple Books. These include readings from Plato to Peter Pan.

Everyone knows the Kindle, but Apple Books is a real star here. It has a comprehensive list of “books you should read”, which are stacked with books that you can download for free. Many of these are also free on Amazon, but some will cost you a few dollars (or maybe just a few cents). If you are a Kindle Unlimited subscriber, you have many, many more books to read “for free”.

There is a large, wide world of cheap and free books on these platforms, but here are 17 classics to get you started.

Little Women (Louisa May Alcott)

Little Women was a hit from the moment it was released in 1859, and it is currently enjoying its last moment in the sun thanks to the film adaptation in 2019 with Emma Watson in the lead role. It is a coming-of-age novel that follows four sisters into femininity, and it has been consistently successful over the past 150 years. Little Women was a acclaimed novel and has been adapted for plays, films, operas and television shows. You can see what the fuss is about for $ 0.

Download Little Women free on Apple Books or Amazon Kindle for $ 1.63.

Peter Pan (JM Barrie)

Here’s one for parents looking for something to read for their kids or Disney enthusiasts who want to read the play that inspired the novel that inspired the 1953 classic. Peter Pan, also released as Peter and Wendy, is the story of Neverland, Peter Pan, Tinkerbell and the terrible Captain Hook. However, a worthy disclaimer: It contains depiction of Indians who are very … 1904.

Download Peter Pan free on Apple Books or for $ 2.23 on the Kindle.

Frankenstein (Mary Shelley)

Like most classics, there is a chance that you may have suffered through Frankenstein while teaching English in high school. We’ve all been there. Choosing any book at school is enough to turn someone off for a book, but Frankenstein has always been an exception for me. Frankenstein is not only seen as the first science-fiction novel, it is also a timeless parable, one of the finest examples of Gothic literature and a true product of the Romantic movement.

If that kind of doesn’t sell you, you can still laugh at Victor Frankenstein whining as he reaps what he sows.

Get Frankenstein free on Amazon Kindle or free on Apple Books.

17 free books to download on Kindle and Apple Books right now


Dracula (Bram Stoker)

Another one for the Goths! If you are a fan of our undead friends, it is worth experiencing one of the books that started it all. The story is terrific for them after a good, exciting Gothic horror. It’s easy to believe that Dracula is another hard to read classic, but that could not be further from the truth. The writing holds up really well (after over 100 years, it’s a big achievement) and it’s really creepy in parts.

Get Dracula free on Apple Books or free on Amazon Kindle.

Republic (Plato)

Greek philosophers are still harkened back to all these centuries later, which means it is unlikely that they will soon fall out of style. Plato is without a doubt the most famous Greek philosopher – next to Socrates and Aristotle – and the Republic is his most famous work. What is most striking about much (though fortunately perhaps not all) of ancient Greek writing is how related it is today.

Reading ancient Greek literature can also help you sound more pretentious at parties, which is nice.

Download to free on Amazon Kindle or free on Apple Books.

Dream Psychology (Sigmund Freud)

Sigmund Freud is one of the rare specialized academics who penetrates the spirit of the times. The Oedipus complex, Freudian slider, Id, ego and super-ego, and even the term “defense mechanism” are all related to Freud’s works. Unfortunately, many of these works are intensely academic and dense. At just 216 pages, Dream Psychology is one of Freud’s most remarkable works, and it is also one of the easiest to read.

Download dream psychology for free on Apple Books or $ 2.91 on Amazon Kindle.

Metamorphoses (Franz Kafka)

There are lots of long readings on this list, so here is a short one. The metamorphosis follows a man’s sudden and inexplicable transformation into a large insect, and although it spans less than 100 pages, it has been the subject of rigorous psychological study and interpretation for the 116 years since it was first published.

Download to free on Apple Books or 77 øre on the Amazon Kindle.

Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet (Shakespeare)

If you really want to challenge yourself, Shakespeare is the way to go. The language and format may take a while to get used to, but it is richly rewarding once you do. There is a play for everyone: for those who like romance, tragedy, comedy or even completely unheard of fantasy. Hamlet and Romeo and Juliet are among the most famous so they would be great places to start. Almost everyone knows at least a little about the stories – and trust us, familiarity with the plot helps a lot if you are new to Shakespeare.

Download Romeo and Juliet to free on Apple Books or for 80 øre on Amazon Kindle.

Download Hamlet for free at Amazon Kindle or free on Apple Books.

Sherlock Holmes

Robert Downey Jr. as Sherlock Holmes.

Warner Bros.

The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (Arthur Conan Doyle)

Sherlock Holmes was a cool way before Robert Downey Jr. played him on the silver screen. This collection of stories was published over 120 years ago, but mysteries have a timeless quality: the intrigue does not die with age. Sherlock Holmes may not be the most important book on this list, but it may be the funniest.

Download The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes for free on Apple Books or on Amazon Kindle for $ 2.01.

Pride and Prejudice, Emma (Jane Austen)

We know what you’re thinking: Jane Austen would not just be more orderly and boring Bridgerton? What do they say? What’s going on at all? And yes, Jane Austen books can feel very scary and almost meaningless when you look at them through a modern lens. However, reading Austen books is like a cheeky window into the past: Jane Austen books parody the Regency community and laugh at how ridiculous some social amusers were back then. If you want to get started with Austen, we recommend that you go with Pride and Prejudice or Emma first.

Download Emma for free at Apple Books or for 87 øre on Amazon Kindle.

Download Pride and Prejudice for free at Apple Books or $ 1 on Amazon Kindle.

The Communist Manifesto (Karl Marx)

Let us even state that this is not an endorsement of communism. With that out of the way, the Communist Manifesto is among the most influential writings of the last few centuries. Written by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, it would inspire a movement and philosophy that would eventually take over half of Europe within a century of its release date in 1848. It is also much easier to read that Marx’s significantly more Thorough Work Capital, but it is also available for free if you are reading thousands of pages of 19th century economies.

Download the Communist Manifesto free on Apple Books or 78 øre on Amazon Kindle.



Huckleberry’s Adventures (Mark Twain)

There are several novels known as “the great American novel” – Catcher in the Rye, Moby Dick, To Kill a Mockingbird and many more. But perhaps the novel with the greatest claim to the title is The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Twain is considered America’s greatest humorist, and he is one of its most famous writers ever. Huckleberry Finn is the book he is best known for, and it should be read by anyone who wants to familiarize themselves with American literature.

Download Huckleberry Finn’s Adventure to free on Apple Books or $ 4 on Amazon Kindle.

Moby Dick (Herman Melville)

Alas, Huck Finn is not the only great American novel you can read for free. Moby Dick gave the world the idiom of the “white whale”, as well as one of the most famous opening sentences. The book is approaching 170 years old, but it is still a staple with “books you should read” lists everywhere.

Get Moby Dick free on Apple Books or $ 1 on Amazon Kindle.

The Federalist Papers (Alexander Hamilton)

You may have first experienced these as extremely boring story texts, however the worldwide phenomenon that is the Hamilton musical has breathed new life into these. The Federalist Papers is a collection of essays by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison and John Jay (but mostly by Hamilton) in which they encourage ratification of the US Constitution and also argue for a more centralized state. These will be dry for many, but valuable background for diehard fans of the Hamilton musical.

Download Federalist Papers free on Apple Books or for 79 øre on Amazon Kindle.

War and Peace (Leo Tolstoy)

We’ve saved the biggest ones for last. War and peace is a monster so much so that the name has become an adjective used to describe frighteningly large pieces of work. And make no mistake, War and Peace is a lot to get through. But to do so would be to familiarize oneself with the “lion of Russian literature,” as the book has been called. If you pass the challenge, it’s free at Apple Books.

Download war and peace for free on Apple Books or for 80 øre on Amazon Kindle.

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