Books on a Budget

Hello folks!

I know we’re all big readers here and I know the incredible amount of books we all go through in a month, so today I wanted to share my method of doing books on a budget. So without further ado, let’s begin!

Physical Books

Borrow from friends!
Budget: Free

This is something that sounds really obvious but I don’t do it often enough. If you have similar tastes, are kind to books and have willing friends, always borrow books. Plus, bonus points for finishing a book and being able to discuss it afterwards too. (I am my sister’s personal lending library!)

From the Library Of
Via MarkStampShop


Budget: Free

I love libraries, I have *always* loved libraries and I wrote a blog post dedicated to them recently which you can find here. If you have a good library near you, become a member! In London, if you’re a member of one library, you can borrow books from any library in that borough. You can reserve books and have them brought to your local library (though some boroughs charge for this service, it is often free). Lots of libraries offer an online system where you can borrow ebooks and audiobooks too.

Arthur Library Card

Charity Shops
Budget: ~£1-£2.50 per book

Charity shops are a goldmine when it comes to buying books on the cheap. A little bit more hit and miss with the fact that you have to search through books and hope there’s one from your TBR (but let’s be honest you probably have a long TBR). I’ve never spent more than £2.50 on a paperback and they’re usually in good condition. Bonus points for giving money to charity, double bonus points for returning a book you didn’t like or don’t want to keep forever back to a charity shop (something I have definitely done before).

British Heart Foundation

Amazon Marketplace
Budget: Cheaper than RRP

I know Amazon is the devil, but it is one of the easiest and most accessible way to find second-hand books. When you search for a book on Amazon and go onto the page for it, you will see these little hyperlinks telling you that you can get books that are ‘new from’ and ‘used from’. Click on one of these bad boys and it will take you to a page of second-hand retailers who sell books from as cheap as £2.81 including postage! The price varies depending on the condition of the book but you can definitely find a bargain here.


Amazon Kindle Unlimited
Budget: £7.99/month

Ah, the beast has reared it’s ugly head twice on my list today. I’ve just done a 30-day free trial of this, and I quite like it. With Kindle Unlimited, you get access to a huge catalogue of ebooks that you can borrow and keep up to 10 on your device at a time. The first month is free and after that is £7.99 a month which is a lot cheaper than constantly buying books. I decided not to continue with the trial as I actually didn’t end up using it much so this one is an option depending on whether Amazon’s catalogue of books appeal to you.

Kindle Unlimited

Budget: £1.99 and under

If you are looking for an e-book bargain, sign up to Bookbub. This is an email newsletter which sends you daily deals on e-books. The deals range from £1.99 to free on various platforms. E-books often go through limited sale periods and the people at Bookbub find them for you. Every day you get a selection of books from fantasy to adult fiction to cookery books. I have bought Scythe, Everless and The Poet X for 99p among other books that are sitting on my Kobo, waiting to be read and loved.


Project Gutenberg
Budget: Free

Project Gutenberg is a volunteer-based online library of thousands of e-books. For fans of classics and literature this is the place to go. You can find great classics such as FrankensteinDracula and Pride and Prejudice on this website. Each book is offered in different formats and because the books are out of copyright, it’s completely legal and no one is losing out.

Project Gutenburg

Budget: Free

This is more relevant to book bloggers, but if you run a blog or review books anywhere, you can access advance e-copies via Netgalley. I’ve had the chance to read books such as Clean in advance in return for writing an honest review. You have to request books and you may not always get them, plus they expire after a little while so it’s a little bit limited but it’s a really great way to get a chance to read books. (I’ve currently not been using this service as I recently reset my kobo and can no longer access my netgalley books, but otherwise this is wonderful!)


So those are my ways of getting books on the cheap. Is there any other way of reading books on a budget? Please share in the comments below!

I recently came across Leisha @ LiteraryLeisha’s blog posts on buying books on a budget: Reading On a Budget: Where To Find Cheap Books and Reading on a Budget: How To Get Books For FREE! and Catherine @ This is One For the Books wrote a great post on this topic too: Books on a Budget.


7 thoughts on “Books on a Budget

  1. Wow, I love your header 🙂 oh yes, Amazon is definitely the devil, but I can’t resist the ebooks. They’re about the only way I can actually afford all those books xD Kindle Unlimited is not a thing in my country, but that’s alright, cause I think if it was, my TBR would be terrifying 😀 it’s a little bit tougher with NetGalley when you’re international, but still possible to get by. Sorry to hear your kobo needed to be reset and you lost your old review copies 😦 it’s always so nice to be able to keep them. Edelweiss is another way to do the same, and there used to be other platforms, but they’ve mostly died down now. Then there was that other platform, what’s it called.. Riveted reads? But I don’t use that one because you can only read on the computer. I’ve also heard that Scribd and Hoopla are really cheap and good, especially for internationals.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Amazon is one of those places that you can’t really avoid if you need to do things on a certain budget – or if you want to buy lots of books!
      It’s really interesting to hear an international perspective, my tips are from my personal experience in England, so I do hope that some of these translate to your country. Thanks for the tips, I’ll have to check out Edelweiss, Scribd and Hoopla and see if they have any good books! 🙂


  2. This is such a great resource!! I’m always looking for new ways to read books and this is so helpful. I remember when I first started book blogging and was scouring the internet looking for help on where to go for books. I wish I had this then!! And now you’ve got me seriously thinking about Amazon kindle unlimited, even if they are the devil 😂


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