Online book resources
Our main resource for the books we record is the Project Gutenberg. It has a huge catalog of public domain e-books, and they do extensive legal checking before releasing their titles. Generally, if it was published in 1925 or before, it's public domain in the U.S., which is good enough for us. Nevertheless, there are also other resources online which are listed here. But bear in mind that the book has to be in the public domain (see Copyright and Public Domain). If you are in doubt, don't start recording until the copyright status is approved by an administrator.
- Project Gutenberg
- The University of Adelaide Library
- World Wide School
- Online Liberty Library
- Wisdom Quest
- Virginia Online Etext Library
- Christian Classics Ethereal Library
- The Rare Book Room
- Hathi Trust (not all texts here are PD, but those that are are clearly marked)
- Google Books (only use books with full view; doesn't work for everyone outside U.S.)
- Live Search Books (only use books with full view; doesn't work for everyone outside U.S.)
- archive.org - texts: not indexed by Google, so well worth a search when nothing else has been found. Operates according to an odd mix of US and Canadian copyright law, depending on where the book-scans were done.
Distributed Proofreaders acts as a creation source for Project Gutenberg by proofreading, through a network of volunteers, public domain works. Using the Project Search feature, you can sort by title, author, language, genre, etc.
Texts completed and posted to Project Gutenberg (and it is recommended you only use completed works due to the changable nature of works in progress) appear at the bottom of the sorted list(s). NOTE: You must create an account at Distributed Proofreaders to use this feature
- Baldwin Project - all text is online and all works are in the public domain. The About This Text section for each book contains the public domain documentation.
- Children's Library offers many ways to search for books. Use the advanced search option for the easiest and quickest way to find what you are looking for!
- WorldWide School Books are grouped by genre on this page.
- Children's Books Online
- Classic Reader This site offers many different children's books, very helpful
- Children's books, scanned at the Internet Archive - need checking for PDness and completeness of book, but a great selection!
Warning: not all texts are pd in the US - please double check the date of first publication before starting to record. Text must be published in 1922 or earlier to be in the public domain in the United States.
- http://rzbl04.biblio.etc.tu-bs.de:8080/docportal/content/below/index.xml (u.a. historische Kinderbücher und botanische und zoologische Bücher)
Not enough? Find more links here:
- Literary Gothic:
- Fables and Fairy and Folk Tales
- Female Authors:
- A Celebration of Women Authors: http://digital.library.upenn.edu/women/
- Adventure fiction:
- 19th century adventure fiction: http://www.athelstane.co.uk
- The Union Catalog of Pre-1600 Books Online: http://www.pbm.com/~lindahl/union This list of pre-1600-relevant books is taken from a number of online collections and at the time of adding link, contained 12,502 books.
- PD Novellas - Melville House - includes summaries, it's a print resource, but handy for getting ideas!
- Short Stories - short-stories.co.uk - need to check copyright / public domainness carefully, but a handy resource.
- Documents in Law, History and Diplomacy - The Avalon Project at Yale Law School (documents after 1922 will need a careful copyright check ... please don't start recording until this is agreed.)
- Franz Kafka: http://www.kafka.org/index.php?english_transl
- Sarah Orne Jewett: http://www.public.coe.edu/~theller/soj/contents.htm
- Charlotte Mason: http://amblesideonline.org/CM/toc.html
- George MacDonald: http://www.george-macdonald.com/
When a Book Is Not Online
If no e-text is available for the text you want to record, you might be able to use a hard copy. Please post in Book Suggestions and discuss this with an admin before starting the project. In such cases, we normally want to see a picture or scan of the title page and copyright page of the hard copy before the project starts to verify its copyright status. If you go this route, note that your proof-listener will not have access to the text for word-perfect or special (referencing the text) proof-listening. (Alternately, you may also scan or photograph the whole work and upload it to Archive yourself, so that the text is available for everyone. Please visit Archive.org's help pages for instructions on this.)