Mmm, the smell of free ebooks in the morning. That’s what I like.
From July 4 to August 4 2009, the 4th World eBook Fair will be taking place (note if you click the link there’s a movie with audio that automatically plays-just a heads up if you’re at work or have a sleeping toddler on your lap). What is this ebook fair you ask? Well it’s a project brought to you by the likes of Project Gutenberg, the World Public Library, Digital Pulp Publishing, Ask.com, he Internet Archive, Mobilebooks and Baen Books by which they hope to make over 2 million free ebooks (as well as other commercial books for purchase) available on the World Ebook Fair site. A lot of the free ebooks are already available for free at other sites but the Ebook Fair brings them all to one place.
There are ebooks available from sources such as the CIA’s Electronic Reading Room, Etana: Ancient Near Eastern Archives, International Law Library and The Sound of Literary Works (an audio book collection). Of course for the genre reader, the most obvious attraction are the books from the Baen Free Library (from whence the cover images in this post are from).
[More after the cut]
All that are shown in the Ebook Fair are the covers of the Baen Books, so if you want descriptions (as well as info as to which books belong in the same series) head to the Baen Free Library itself (They also have formats other than PDF available there). Of course if you already know which you want or just want to download all the books (or judge them by their covers) then just click away.
Of the available books I’ve read 1632, 1633 (both alternate history books), and the War God’s Own (sword and sorcery) and all were pretty fun, light romps. The delienation between good guys and bad guys in all books is fairly clear (although 1633 involves a “conversion” of a sort) and the advantages/skills of the good guys (and the can-do tone of the books) were such that I never really felt they were in peril (this is not George R. R. Martin or Robin Hobb style ‘crush the protagonist’ tales) but if you’re looking for something less shades-of-gray, they can be very cathartic. Sometimes, I simply want my good guys to wipe the floor with the bad guys.