Where to get textbooks for free – Top 10 sites to find free books

Where to get textbooks as cheap as possible if not free?

Well, free is not always an option, but many college students wonder where to find textbooks for cheap?

  1. Get a textbook price comparison of buying used textbooks online versus an online textbook rental.
  2. If you need a free textbook ask around to borrow one, or see our resource list below.
  3. Check Craigslist as another place where to get textbooks for cheap.
  4. Check your local and college libraries as they might have a copy.
  5. Remember to factor textbook buy back prices if you buy a textbook versus a textbook rental when determining total cost.
  6. Be considerate, but your professor might have their free textbook review copy to lend you

Where to find textbooks for free?  Top 10+ sites where to get textbooks for free:

Where to get textbooks free

Google’s Free eBooks – Here is a list of the top ebooks found at Google’s eBookstore

Online Mathematics Textbooks – A growing list of free mathematics textbooks hosted by Georgia Tech University, Atlanta, Georgia

Project Gutenberg – Free ebook site started by Michael Hart, did you know the first ebook was created on July 4, 1971?

WikiBooks – A huge collection of open content textbooks that anyone can edit or download free

TextbookRevolution – A student run organization with huge growing list of free online textbooks and educational materials

Flat World Knowledge – Since 2009 their free textbooks have been adopted by over 1600 professors at over 900 schools in over 40 countries

Free High School Science Texts – Volunteers created free science books to help support high school education in South Africa

FreeBooks4Doctors – The place to download free medical textbooks on the internet

FreeTechBooks – Hundreds of free technical and computer books to download as open source, lots of free computer programming books

BookBon – Free ebooks for student and travelers written exclusively for UK based BookBon – financed by sparse in book ads

Open Educational Resources Consortium – Community College Consortium for Open Educational Resources (CCCOER) has over 500 open source textbooks for viewing and downloading for free

cK-12 Flexbooks – Customizable free textbooks digitized on multiple platforms focused on the K-12 market

Did we miss any websites on our search for where to get textbooks for free?  We actually just gave you 12 sites where you can find textbooks for free.  However, please leave us a comment below if there are others to include in the list for free textbooks online.

A textbook according to Wikipedia is:

textbook or coursebook (UK English) is a manual of instruction in any branch of study. Textbooks are produced according to the demands of educational institutions. Although most textbooks are only published in printed format, many are now available as online electronic books.

The article continues with facts and figures about the broken textbook market that President Obama called a “scam” and “a huge racket” during his campaign, but no need to rehash the high cost of textbooks.

Here at RentScouter we are always on the search on where to get textbooks for cheap if you can’t get them free.

A brief highlighting of our current textbook rental and used textbook companies:

BookRenter – One of the first in the business to offer textbook rentals

Chegg – Not the first, but definitely the biggest company to rent textbooks by many standards

CampusBookRentals – Great place to rent books and support their charitable causes.

TextbookStop – Innovative new textbook rental company offering their “RentBack” option

And some of the finest companies that buy back textbooks when you sell back used books for cash:

Powell’s Books – A Portland institution that buys all kinds of weird used books, but tough on condition

BookByte – One of the oldest in the business of buying back books, sells through McKenzie Books

First Class Books – Roots in the Southwest, in business over a decade, fast service

TextbooksRus – Also known as “Bookstores”, based in Ohio, one of the largest textbook buyback companies

Amazon Textbook Buyback – Only Amazon credit for trade-ins, but usually the best sell back price, watch condition, we discuss Amazon credit versus cash for textbooks and their special Amazon Student Savings program.

SellBackYourBook – Solid performer that wants your DVDs, CDs, Video Games, and calculators

CKY Books – Solid company that will return rejected textbooks, good customer service

Blue Rocket Books – Sometimes slow, but solid textbook buy back prices, and for every book they buy they donate to a worthy cause

Better World Books – Buys and sells millions of books online to support global literacy initiatives – cheap shipping

Moola4Books – Older company that just started online book buyback, usually good prices

You can’t always find free textbooks, but we can help you find where to get textbooks for cheap, or sell them for the highest price.



  1. I just found RentScouter.com and I love that I can rent textbooks or buy cheap textbooks from one place. They put the prices side by side, and made it easy for me to choose. It makes sense for me to rent some books and buy others. This term, I rented two textbooks and three I buy textbooks online instead of going to the college bookstore.

  2. Hi there, i got you an article to show you the list of mostly used websites for free ebook searching and downloading. Just need to check out the link below,choose the websites you like and type on the keywords, you may get the ebooks and freely download it.

    Have a try and hope it helps 🙂

  3. All Things Digital says:

    We’re hearing that online textbook rental service Chegg has completed its third acquisition today, snapping up lecture notes and study guides service Notehall for an undisclosed amount of cash and stock. Chegg, which has received over $219 million in financing and hit revenues in the ballpark of $130 million in 2010, is also reportedly “deep in talks” with bankers regarding its plans to go public. Notehall, which like a micro-Chegg congruously offers a platform for students who want to buy and sell course materials, will be Chegg’s third acquisition after it snapped up other education-related startups Courserank and Cramster last year. Notehall was founded by University of Arizona students Sean Conway , Justin Miller , Fadi Chalfoun and D.J. Stephan in 2008 while they were still at the university. The startup was originally financed with co-founder Justin Miller’s bar mitzvah money and eventually ended up taking part in the Dreamit Ventures incubator program as well making an…

  4. UMRmathmajor says:

    Buy used, online. Unless you need one of those codes or whatever, then you have to be careful that your code hasn't been used yet. I get my books on half.com or amazon for about half of what my Univ bookstore has them for.

  5. Morthon says:

    Who wants to pay a wad of cash for textbooks? Not yours truly. I’m Chegging, baby.

    Seriously, go to Chegg.com where you can rent textbooks rather than buy them. You’ll save between 65%-85%. Yes, I’m serious.

    Just search for the books you need and order. Chegg ships them to you super fast and when your term ends you just ship them back for free. And guess what? They plant a tree for every book that’s rented. Pretty cool.

    Enough said… I personally saved about $350.00 last semester and $400 this semester.

  6. Amy@collegetextbookrental.org says:

    College tuition is high enough and students and parents already pay a lot of money for college classes. On top of tuition is the cost of class materials and textbooks. Textbook renting allows students to save time, money and stress. And you don't have to worry about your books collecting dust on a bookshelf after the class is over. More and more online booksellers are offering textbook rental and the benefits are endless.

  7. I am a few years over the median book buying age but I buy romance, historical, paranormal, contemporary, self improvement books, and some cookbooks.
    Lately I have been having to buy and rent textbooks for my daughters who are are students in college. Whoever came up with the idea for renting textbooks , thank you.
    chegg.com has been a life saver. I only wish I had found out about chegg when my oldest daughter started college then I might have a couple of thousand more to spend on books and other things, like a vacation.

  8. smilingharsha says:

    College Students Can Now Rent Textbooks Electronically From Amazon

  9. Rent Textbooks says:

    Very true, we covered this announcement here textbook rentals on Kindle, and will be covering more of the program shortcomings shortly.

  10. Rent Textbooks says:

    Chegg is a great resource, but from our information they don’t always have the best price, guess they have to recoup their advertising budget somehow 🙂 Just remember to get a textbook price comparison whether you are renting books or selling your textbooks.

  11. Rent Textbooks says:

    Yes, buying textbooks online is a great way to save money, use the price comparison features here at RentScouter to find where to get textbooks for cheap as it might be Half, Amazon, or someone else like Abe books.


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