Feb 6, 2009

Online Reading - Are You Doing It?

I've been wondering - do you ever read books online? One of my goals for this year is to read classic literature. I decided to start with Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre. I watched one of the movie versions (1996 with William Hurt as Mr. Rochester) last year and knew I'd love it. I definitely want to add a copy of this book to my home library, but in the meantime I wanted to get started reading. I was snooping around online and came across a site called Literature.org. I typed in a search for 'Jane Eyre online' and there it was! I'm sure some of you already know about this useful site but I still thought it was worth mentioning.

This site is the perfect answer for me. Since I don't drive, with the help of this site, I can read a book without actually having it. Reading online is not my first choice, but until I can get to the bookstore or library, this is a good substitute. I don't know if I'll read the entire book online, but at least I'll have a headstart.
Another useful aspect of this site is that it enables you to check out a book to see if it's something you'd like to read. For instance, I've never read any Dickens or Faulkner and I've heard many readers say they don't care for their work. Well, I can go to this site and see for myself without leaving my home. If I see that its something I'll enjoy, on my next trip to the library, I'll get the book.

Another cool site I recently discovered from another blogger (forgive me - I can't remember who) is DailyLit. . It's similiar, but you sign up to receive installments regularly, either through your email or an RSS feed. You can even decide how often you want to receive them. It may take awhile to read, say Tolstoy's Anna Karenina, (over 400 installments, I believe), but it is a way to get access to the book for free.

I know most of you prefer to have an actual book in your hand, but I can see where these types of sites could be very helpful to some. How do you feel about online reading? Have you used sites like these? And if so, what were the circumstances. I'd be interested to know how popular they are. Please leave me a comment and tell me your thoughts.


  1. I think that is a wonderful way to use the online book databases! I do not enjoy reading books on my computer (can't find a comfortable position), but I download public domain books to my Kindle all the time.

    You may also want to check out Project Gutenberg for an extensive list of free ebooks as well.

    (don't you just love Jane Eyre so far?)

  2. I downloaded Midnight Sun by Stephenie Meyer. I read more than a few pages (without realizing it) and it was surprisingly easy. I have a laptop so finding a comfy position isn't an issue.

    I'm reminded that I need to go back and finish reading Midnight Sun!

    Also, I'm waiting for my Kindle to arrive (ordered in December and I think it will be the latest version by the time it is on my doorstep). I plan to check out all the free book sites.

    I also read my local newspaper online during the week (it's delivered on weekends), as well as the Sunday NYTimes book review, Style section and health articles.

  3. I've got 2 books in pdf format and have avoided them because of that. I think I would read them if I had an eReader, though.

  4. Molly - I'll probably get a Kindle soon to help with eye fatigue, but can't really afford it right now. Thanks for the link to Project Gutenberg, I'll definitely look into that! And yes, I'm loving Jane Eyre!

    Mary - I hope you like your Kindle when it comes! I agree, the computer is not the most comfortable spot to read, but I can handle it for awhile.

    Kathy - I have one ebook on my computer that I haven't read and the main reason is that I forget about it!

    Mary, I forgot to mention that my friend is reading Jane Eyre along with me, but he has the actual book and he commented about how long the chapters are. Honestly, I hadn't noticed because I'm not flipping pages. Reading online, they don't seem that long.

  5. I have not read a book online but I tend to read my news and some Manga online. Having a laptop makes it pretty easy.

  6. I love reading eBooks - you are right, the chapters don't seem that long.

    As in one other comment - I use Project Gutenberg to get my classics.

  7. I'm one of those that needs to have a book in hand. My eyes don't like to read anything too much online so I avoid it. And still I just like the look and feel of my book. It's a comfort thing for me too.

  8. I think because I work on a computer all day long at a job, I prefer never to read a book online. Plus its so much better to feel the pages in your hands.

  9. I think that online reading sites are a good option; however, I feel like I spend WAY TOO MUCH time online as it is. Therefore, I am not in a place in my life where I would like to read books online.

  10. Caspette - I read my local paper online too. I love not having the papers stack up! lol

    Kara - I'm excited to try out the Gutenberg project.

    Dar - I'll always prefer a book too. :)

    Serena - I know what you mean. I work on a compuer all day too, which is why I've only now started reading books online. Soon, I'll be cutting back hours at work and it won't be quite so tiring.

    Beastmomma - I can see your point. At times I feel like I'm online ALL the time! If not reading, then blogging.

    Thank you all so much for your comments and also the suggestions!


Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a comment! I look forward to hearing from you again soon!