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Monday, May 9, 2011

Netflix for Books

Brian asked me if I saw Don's tweet about BookSwim and at the mention of "books" I was instantly intrigued. Don described it as Netflix for books. Well, I love books and I love Netflix so this has to be awesome, right? Well, maybe a little awesome.

BookSwim allows you to borrow books that are delivered right to your door. If you purchase one of BookSwim's standard packages, you do not have to pay shipping. You can get 3 books per month for $23.95, 5 books for $29.95, 7 for $35.95 and 11 for $59.95 a month. If you just want one book a month, you can pay $9.99 but you will have to cough up $3.99 for shipping. Considering that a new hardback novel can cost more than the lowest price plan, this is a great deal if you frequently buy new books. For me, however, this is too expensive.

Despite being an avid reader, I rarely buy hardbacks new. I am lucky enough to have a wonderful public library system that is able to get new books very quickly. Half-Price Books is another great source for new and old books. If you do not have a strong library or a good used bookstore around, BookSwim might be a good option for you.

Another plus for BookSwim is that they have textbooks. If you're a student like me, this could end up being a great deal. Unfortunately my current $100+ textbook isn't at BookSwim yet.

For now, BookSwim isn't a good value for me. I will definitely keep checking them out to see if they change their price plans. Do any of you use BookSwim? Tell us about your experience.