One big misconception about the Kindle is that you can only buy ebooks from Amazon. While that is true for ebooks laced with DRM, you can still buy ebooks to read on a Kindle from websites that sell DRM-free ebooks.
The same goes for the Sony Readers, Nook, and other ereaders. DRM-free ebooks will work on any device that supports the format the ebook comes in, and if your particular device doesn’t support that format you can easily convert the ebook with Calibre to a different file format. There aren’t any device restrictions, activations, or other nonsense with DRM-free ebooks.
The websites listed below sell DRM-free ebooks. Some have free ebooks too, but if that’s what you’re looking for check the free ebooks page for a list of websites that specialize in that. Free ebooks are typically DRM-free as well, except weekly promotional free ebooks.
DRM-Free eBook Stores
Smashwords is an ebook publishing and distribution platform with a massive library of DRM-free ebooks available in multiple formats for any ereader. Smashwords publishes everything from novels to non-fiction to poetry and anything in between. Smashwords has a wide selection of free ebooks as well.
Baen’s Webscriptions don’t have DRM and come in multiple formats for support on any reading device. Baen’s books are science fiction/speculative fiction. They also have a good selection of free ebooks.
O’Reilly eBooks are DRM-free and come in a bundle of PDF, EPUB, MOBI, and DAISY formats. They also have Android .apk files when possible. O’Reilly specializes in tech ebooks.
Fictionwise sells both DRM-protected and DRM-free ebooks. Their DRM-free ebooks are labeled “MultiFormat”. These come in 13 different formats that will work on virtually any e-reading device. Update: Sorry, this ebookstore is no longer in business.
Double Dragon Publishing offers their titles in paperback and in several DRM-free formats: Rocket Ebook, MS-Reader, Adobe PDF, Palm, Hiebook, iSilo, MobiPocket. Other formats are sometimes available as well. DDP’s books span several genres and categories.
BeWrite Books titles are available in paperback and DRM-free PDF, EPUB, and MOBI ebook formats. They have books in several genres. Update: Sorry, this ebookstore is no longer in business.
Noble Romance Publishing sells DRM-free Romance and Erotica ebooks that come in HTML, PDF, and MOBI formats. Update: Nothing on website anymore, appears to be out of business.
This list of DRM-free ebook stores is a good start but is far from complete. Please feel free to add your own suggestions in the comments section below.
Harlequin’s “Carina Press” imprint is non-DRM. They publish e-books only, and publish more than just romances, or at least they *want* to publish a wider range of material. http://ebooks.carinapress.com/
Samhain is non-DRM. They currently publish romantica and erotica, and are embarking on publishing horror. They snapped up Dorchester’s well-respected horror editor, so I do expect their horror division to be credible once it gets going. http://www.samhainpublishing.com/
Ellora’s Cave is non-DRM. They publish erotica. http://ellorascave.com/
E-Reads is non-DRM. They mainly e-publish out-of-print fiction. http://ereads.com/
Of course, there are the free public-domain classics from sources like Google, Project Gutenberg, ManyBooks, and FeedBooks. Those shouldn’t have any DRM on them.
Both Amazon and Barnes & Noble sell non-DRMed e-books from non-DRMed publishers like the ones mentioned above. Amazon nicely labels theirs “Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited” to tell you that it’s non-DRM. B&N doesn’t give you a clue other than the publisher’s name; it’s probably best to download the free sample and be sure it’s non-DRM before putting your money down at B&N.
Both Amazon and B&N also give their self-publishers the option of having DRM or not. J. A. Konrath is e-publishing exclusively at Amazon but without DRM, so that non-Kindle users can convert his e-books. Over at B&N, there’s still no indication whether a PubIt! title is DRMed or not, so all you can do is download the free sample and see if it’s DRMed (from what I can tell, almost all of them are).
Mendele HeBooks http://www.mendele.co.il is the only site selling non DRM Hebrew eBooks in ePub format.
Unfortunately, not all reading systems supports Hebrew or other RTL languages, but this is a different story…
Susan Barrett says
WritersReadersDirect http://writersreadersdirect.com is an ebookstore/epublishing site for writers and readers of quality fiction and nonfiction. Standards are maintained with editorial vetting of submissions with a £5 submission fee. It costs from £1 to £3 per download and writers receive royalties of two thirds. eBooks are available in either PDF or ePUB format and can be read on all kinds of eReader devices and systems.
There is no DRM on any of the WRD eBooks.
Kris Stopher says
Found another great site for Kindle Users fed up with paying Kindle prices…
Thanks for the suggestion but that is a pirate site so I removed the url. Pirate sites are not welcome here.
Steve Miller says
Science fiction and fantasy from Steve Miller and Sharon Lee is largely DRM fgree — we have work out from Baen and elsewhere — our work is not DRMd when we distribute it to NOOK/Kindle/Smashwords stores — to see the format choices, go to http://www.pinbeambooks.com or search for “pinbeam books” at the Amazon or Nook online stores.
Digital Libraries.com is non-DRM http://www.digilibraries.com
(edited to move link to end, was causing issues with the comments list – Nathan)
I really like writerreaders direct also! Its got a fair price and seems to be one of the best.
I do plan on checking out digilibraries as well, does anyone have a good experience with them?
Buy Ebooks Online is also DRM-Free
If they don’t have DRM then that site isn’t legit because they are selling bestsellers that publishers require to have DRM.
Gavin Grant says
Hi, we have a DRM-free ebooksite for independent publishers, http://www.weightlessbooks.com featuring Small Beer Press, Subterranean Press, Lethe Press, Wildside, Featherproof, as well as DRM-free magazine esubscriptions from NYRSF, Locus, Lightspeed, Apex, Clarkesworld, and more.
Sandy Fisher says
Aventura eBooks has set up a new ebookstore http://www.aventuraebookstore.com with DRM-free ebooks. Specialising in publishing new authors in Adventure, Action, Mystery, Crime and Thriller genres for all ages. Also looking to partner with independent publishers to convert their books and sell them on-line.
Andrea Schober says
XinXii is a self-publishing and distribution platform with a huge library of DRM-free ebooks available in multiple formats and languages: http://www.xinxii.com
Hayden Johnstone says
orbooks are DRM free http://www.orbooks.com/