I just went through my Amazon account, and determined I’ve read 25+ books this summer for free. Some of them were older titles, like Gear Diary Book Club selections, while others were relatively new. Plus issues of Consumer Reports and Runner’s World, all for free thanks to the local library. But how much did we really save?
Last year we cancelled our Kindle Unlimited because the library offered a great selection for free, and this summer was my chance to try and quantify that savings. I didn’t sit down and add up every book on my Amazon list, but here’s a sampling of the Kindle prices for a few titles I read (basically, the books I would have bought outright without the library, as opposed to “Oh, hey, free is good, I’ll give it a shot” books I downloaded as well):
- I Regret Nothing: $12.99
- Dresden Files Books 1-6: $53.99
- Dresden Files Books 7-12: $53.99
- Ghost Story (Dresden Files 13): $8.99
- Cold Days (Dresden Files 14): $5.99
- Skin Game (Dresden Files 15): $9.99
- Beyond Belief: $11.85
- Without You, There is No Us: $12.99
- Afterparty: $9.99
Add in free access to Runner’s World, Cooking Light, Consumer Reports, and several dozen other magazines via Flipster, and it’s easy to say the local library has saved us $200, and allowed me to read a significant number of titles, far more than our budget would have allowed had I been buying these outright! This is slightly skewed because I chewed through all fifteen titles in the “Dresden Files” series this summer, but if I hadn’t been reading those I would have been reading other titles to fill my time, so it still evens out.
Have you been taking advantage of your local library? If so, do the math and let us know your savings, and if not, this should be a good incentive for you to give them a try!