Not in the mood to make the trip out to your local library or bookstore? Well, luckily, you don’t have to, while still being able to read many great books for free. With Prime Reading, you can score thousands of free ebooks just for being a Prime member. (And who isn’t a Prime member these days?)
Prime Reading is one of the benefits many people overlook, but is a great perk for book lovers. It’s kind of like a mix between your public library and Netflix. The books you read through Prime Reading are just on loan, and there’s a rotating stock of somewhere between 1,000 and 3,000 books to keep the selection interesting. You’ll also be able to find some comics, magazines, and audiobooks included as well.
It’s not all great news though. I’ve noticed that while there’s always a few really great options available through Prime Reading, a majority of the titles are a bit subpar. So how can you know which novels are worth adding to your TBR pile so that you can prioritize them before they disappear? Hopefully we can help with that. Below you’ll find our list of some of our current favorite recommendations to try. And hey, if you don’t like them, they were free anyway.
Please note that you’ll need to have the Amazon Kindle app downloaded and linked up to your Prime account so that the books you’re interested in borrowing can be sent directly to your device.
If Prime Reading is so great, shouldn’t I upgrade to Kindle Unlimited?
Before we dive into the current list of which Prime Reading books are best, let’s talk about Kindle Unlimited briefly. We’re often asked if we recommend paying for Kindle Unlimited. After all, if Prime reading is good for only having a couple thousand titles, wouldn’t Kindle Unlimited, with its millions of titles, be that much better? Generally, we say no.
Kindle Unlimited costs $9.99 a month, which is about $120 a year. The ebooks you can read with Kindle Unlimited typically cost anywhere from .99 cents to $4.99, and these books are strictly on loan. You don’t get to keep them when you’re done and can only have ten “borrowed” at a time. This can be a bummer for readers hoping to hold on to their favorites to read again later.
So, unless you are a lucky individual who will be able to read more than the two to ten Kindle Unlimited books a month needed to pay for the subscription, we recommend saving your money to purchase the ebooks you’re really excited about. Prime Reading often shuffles through some of the more popular Kindle Unlimited books as well, which makes KU a bit more than most people need. Especially when combined with the other ways to get free Amazon ebooks and other programs that help you discover limited time free ebooks, like we do at Book Cave!
The Top 30 Amazon Prime Free Books You’ll Definitely Want to Check Out
1. If You Tell by Gregg Olsen
A true story of murder, family secrets, and the unbreakable bond of sisterhood. If You Tell is a survivor’s story of absolute evil—and the freedom and justice that Nikki, Sami, and Tori risked their lives to fight for. Sisters forever, victims no more, they found a light in the darkness that made them the resilient women they are today—loving, loved, and moving on.
2. Lying Next to Me by Gregg Olsen
No matter what you see, no matter what you’ve heard, assume nothing. Another great book from Gregg Olsen, Adam and Sophie Warner and their three-year-old daughter are vacationing in Washington State’s Hood Canal for Memorial Day weekend. It’s the perfect getaway to unplug—and to calm an uneasy marriage. But on Adam’s first day out on the water, he sees Sophie abducted by a stranger. A hundred yards from shore, Adam can’t save her. And Sophie disappears.
3. One for the Blackbird, One for the Crow by Olivia Hawker
When Ernest Bemis finds his wife, Cora, in a compromising situation with their neighbor, he doesn’t think of survival. In one impulsive moment, a man is dead, Ernest is off to prison, and the women left behind are divided by rage and remorse. Losing her husband to Cora’s indiscretion is another hardship for stoic Nettie Mae. But as a brutal Wyoming winter bears down, Cora and Nettie Mae have no choice but to come together as one family—to share the duties of working the land and raising their children.
4. Where the Forest Meets the Stars by Glendy Vanderah
Joanna Teale throws herself into her work from dusk to dawn, until her solitary routine is disrupted by the appearance of a mysterious child who shows up at her cabin barefoot and covered in bruises. The girl calls herself Ursa, and she claims to have been sent from the stars to witness five miracles. With concerns about the child’s home situation, Jo reluctantly agrees to let her stay—just until she learns more about Ursa’s past. Jo enlists the help of her reclusive neighbor, Gabriel Nash, to solve the mystery of the charming child. But the more time they spend together, the more questions they have.
5. The Art of Inheriting Secrets by Barbara O'Neal
One glance at the breathtaking Rosemere Priory and Olivia understands why the manor, magnificent even in disrepair, was the subject of her mother’s exquisite paintings. What she doesn’t understand is why her mother never mentioned it to her. As Olivia begins digging into her mother’s past, she discovers that the peeling wallpaper, debris-laden halls, and ceiling-high Elizabethan windows covered in lush green vines hide unimaginable secrets.
6. Regretting You by Colleen Hoover
Morgan Grant and her sixteen-year-old daughter, Clara, would like nothing more than to be nothing alike.
While struggling to rebuild everything that crashed around them, Morgan finds comfort in the last person she expects to, and Clara turns to the one boy she’s been forbidden to see. With each passing day, new secrets, resentment, and misunderstandings make mother and daughter fall further apart. So far apart, it might be impossible for them to ever fall back together.
7. The Dare by Lauren Landish
Have you ever had one of those really bad days at work? You know, one where your hot boss catches you photocopying your backside in his office? No? Just me then?
I blame my bestie and partner in chaos. She challenged me with a not-so-innocent dare that I should’ve flat out declined. But I’m an adrenaline junkie, and now, here I am.
8. That Boy by Jillian Dodd
You know, being friends with two cute boys does have its benefits.
One boy will give me my very first kiss. One boy will teach me to make out. One boy will take me to prom. And finally, one boy will ask me to marry him.
They will both be my best friends. But only one of them will be the boy I fall in love with.
Only one of them is That Boy.
9. The Beekeeper's Promise by Fiona Valpy
Heartbroken and hoping for a new start, Abi Howes takes a summer job in rural France at the Château Bellevue. The old château echoes with voices from the past, and soon Abi finds herself drawn to one remarkable woman’s story, a story that could change the course of her summer—and her life.
In 1938, Eliane Martin tends beehives in the garden of the beautiful Château Bellevue. In its shadow she meets Mathieu Dubosq and falls in love for the first time, daring to hope that a happy future awaits. But France’s eastern border is darkening under the clouds of war, and history has other plans for Eliane . . .
10. Winter's Mourn by Mary Stone
A killer is watching . . .
Thirteen years ago, Winter Black came home early from a sleepover to find her parents brutally murdered and her little brother gone—taken by a serial killer called The Preacher.
Now a rookie FBI agent assigned to her first murder case, Winter has returned to the small Virginia town where she grew up. But when bones found by a hunter lead to the discovery of a secret burial ground containing the remains of children, the investigation suddenly hits close to home as the past and future collide with each new shocking discovery. Will they find her brother’s bones in the makeshift graveyard next?
Only The Preacher knows, and he’ll do anything to keep the past—and its secrets—buried until he’s ready to make his final move.
11. This Is Not How It Ends by Rochelle B. Weinstein
When Charlotte and Philip meet, the pair form a deep and instant connection. Soon they’re settled in the Florida Keys with plans to marry. But just as they should be getting closer, Charlotte feels Philip slipping away.
Second-guessing their love is something Charlotte never imagined, but with Philip’s excessive absences, she finds herself yearning for more. When she meets Ben, she ignores the pull, but the supportive single dad is there for her in ways she never knew she desired. Soon Charlotte finds herself torn between the love she thought she wanted and the one she knows she needs.
12. The Overdue Life of Amy Byler by Kelly Harms
Overworked and underappreciated, single mom Amy Byler needs a break. So when the guilt-ridden husband who abandoned her shows up and offers to take care of their kids for the summer, she accepts his offer and escapes rural Pennsylvania for New York City.
Usually grounded and mild mannered, Amy finally lets her hair down in the city that never sleeps. She discovers a life filled with culture, sophistication, and—with a little encouragement from her friends—a few blind dates. When one man in particular makes quick work of Amy’s heart, she risks losing herself completely in the unexpected escape, and as the summer comes to an end, Amy realizes too late that she must make an impossible decision: stay in this exciting new chapter of her life, or return to the life she left behind.
13. The Extraordinary Life of Sam Hell by Robert Dugoni
Sam Hill always saw the world through different eyes. Born with red pupils, he was called “Devil Boy” or Sam “Hell” by his classmates; “God’s will” is what his mother called his ocular albinism. Her words were of little comfort, but Sam persevered, buoyed by his mother’s devout faith, his father’s practical wisdom, and his two other misfit friends.
Forty years later, Sam, a small-town eye doctor, is no longer certain anything was by design—especially not the tragedy that caused him to turn his back on his friends, his hometown, and the life he’d always known. Running from the pain, eyes closed, served little purpose. Now, as he looks back on his life, Sam embarks on a journey that will take him halfway around the world. This time, his eyes are wide open—bringing into clear view what changed him, defined him, and made him so afraid, until he can finally see what truly matters.
14. The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan
If you've been wanting to give the The Heroes of Olympus series a try, then this opportunity to read the first book for free is too good to miss.
Jason has a problem. He doesn't remember anything before waking up on a school bus holding hands with a girl. Apparently she's his girlfriend Piper, his best friend is a kid named Leo, and they're all students in the Wilderness School, a boarding school for "bad kids." What he did to end up here, Jason has no idea—except that everything seems very wrong.
15. In the Heart of the Fire by Dean Koontz
A bloodthirsty sheriff is terrorizing a small Texas town where justice has been buried with his victims. Until Nameless arrives—a vigilante whose past is a mystery and whose future is written in blood.
Anyone who crosses Sheriff Russell Soakes is dead, missing, or warned. One of them is a single mother trying to protect her children but bracing herself for the worst. Nameless fears the outcome. He’s seen it in his visions. Now it’s time to teach the depraved Soakes a lesson in fear. But in turning predators into prey, will Nameless unearth a few secrets of his own?
If you're a Dean Koontz fan, you'll be happy to hear that several of his other books are included with Prime Reading as well.
16. Postcards From a Stranger by Imogen Clark
When Cara stumbles across a stash of old postcards in the attic, their contents make her question everything she thought she knew.
The story she pieces together is confusing and unsettling, and appears to have been patched over with lies. But who can tell her the truth? With her father sinking into Alzheimer’s and her brother reluctant to help, it seems Cara will never find the answers to her questions. One thing is clear, though: someone knows more than they’re letting on.
17. The Selection by Kiera Cass
For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to escape a rigid caste system, live in a palace, and compete for the heart of gorgeous Prince Maxon. But for America Singer, being Selected is a nightmare. It means turning her back on her secret love with Aspen, who is a caste below her, and competing for a crown she doesn’t want.
Then America meets Prince Maxon—and realizes that the life she’s always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined.
18. The Ragged Edge of Night by Olivia Hawker
Germany, 1942. Franciscan friar Anton Starzmann is stripped of his place in the world when his school is seized by the Nazis. He relocates to a small German hamlet to wed Elisabeth Herter, a widow who seeks a marriage—in name only—to a man who can help raise her three children. Anton seeks something too—atonement for failing to protect his young students from the wrath of the Nazis. But neither he nor Elisabeth expects their lives to be shaken once again by the inescapable rumble of war.
19. Winter Cottage by Mary Ellen Taylor
Rather than the quaint Virginian bungalow Lucy expected, Winter Cottage is a grand old estate of many shadows—big enough to hold a century of secrets, passions, and betrayals. It also comes with a handsome and enigmatic stranger, a man next in line to claim Lucy’s inheritance.
Now, as Lucy sifts through the past, uncovering the legacy of secrets that Winter Cottage holds, she’ll come to discover as much about her family history as she does about herself. In searching, she could finally find the one thing she’s never really had: a home.
20. The Butterfly Garden by Dot Hutchison
Near an isolated mansion lies a beautiful garden.
In this garden grow luscious flowers, shady trees . . . and a collection of precious “butterflies”—young women who have been kidnapped and intricately tattooed to resemble their namesakes. Overseeing it all is the Gardener, a brutal, twisted man obsessed with capturing and preserving his lovely specimens.
When the garden is discovered, a survivor is brought in for questioning. FBI agents Victor Hanoverian and Brandon Eddison are tasked with piecing together one of the most stomach-churning cases of their careers. But the girl, known only as Maya, proves to be a puzzle herself.
As her story twists and turns, slowly shedding light on life in the Butterfly Garden, Maya reveals old grudges, new saviors, and horrific tales of a man who’d go to any length to hold beauty captive. But the more she shares, the more the agents have to wonder what she’s still hiding . . .
21. Say You're Sorry by Melinda Leigh
After the devastating loss of her husband in Iraq, Morgan Dane returns to Scarlet Falls, seeking the comfort of her hometown. Now, surrounded by family, she’s finally found peace and a promising career opportunity—until her babysitter is killed and her neighbor asks her to defend his son, Nick, who stands accused of the murder.
22. Stealing Home by Sherryl Woods
Maddie Townsend might live in a town called Serenity and have the best friends a woman could ask for, but her life is overturned when her husband leaves her for a younger woman. When her son’s developing anger issues begin to affect his passion for baseball, Maddie knows she must step in to help. She didn’t expect to develop feelings for her son’s coach, the handsome Cal Maddox, and to learn he has feelings for her, too. But gossip travels quickly in a small town, and Maddie and Cal’s relationship may threaten both their reputations and careers.
Then again, he could be the one man in all of South Carolina who can help her find serenity after all.
23. Born in Fire by K.F. Breene
Supernatural Bounty Hunter isn’t the sort of thing you see on LinkedIn. But with a rare type of magic like mine, I don’t have many options. So dangerous or not, the job is mine. And it was going fine, until an old as sin vampire stole my mark, and with it, my pay day. Knowing I’m poor and desperate, he has offered me a job. I’ll have to work by his side to help solve a top secret case.
Everyone knows not to trust vampires. Especially a hot elder vampire. But without any other jobs coming up, I’m stuck. As I uncover a web of lies and treachery, revealing an enemy I didn’t know existed, the truth of my identity is threatened. I might make it out alive, only to end up in a gilded cage.
24. CyberStorm by Matthew Mather
Mike Mitchell is an average New Yorker struggling just to keep his family together when a string of disasters shreds the bustling city around them. In the space of hours, the Internet and communication networks go down just as a monster snowstorm cuts New York off from the world.
Days go by without contact to the outside world. Then weeks.
In the chaos, conspiracy theories rage about a foreign cyberattack. Is it war? Was it the North Koreans? The Russians? The Chinese? Might this be the first shockwave of a global shift in power? But even these questions become unimportant as Mike and his family struggle for survival in the wintry tomb of a doomed New York.
25. Wish Me Home by Kay Bratt
A hungry, stray dog is the last thing Cara Butter needs. Stranded in Georgia with only her backpack and a few dwindling dollars, she already has too much baggage. Like her twin sister, Hana, who has broken Cara’s heart one too many times. After a lifetime of family troubles, and bouncing from one foster home to another, Cara decides to leave it all behind and strike out alone—on foot.
Cara sets off to Florida to see the home of her literary hero, Ernest Hemingway, accompanied only by Hemi, the stray dog who proves to be the perfect travel companion. But the harrowing trip takes unexpected turns as strangers become friends who make her question everything, and Cara finds that as the journey unfolds, so does her life—in ways she could never imagine.
26. The Tuscan Child by Rhys Bowen
In 1944, British bomber pilot Hugo Langley parachuted from his stricken plane into the verdant fields of German-occupied Tuscany. Badly wounded, he found refuge in a ruined monastery and in the arms of Sofia Bartoli. But the love that kindled between them was shaken by an irreversible betrayal.
Nearly thirty years later, Hugo’s estranged daughter, Joanna, has returned home to the English countryside to arrange her father’s funeral. Among his personal effects is an unopened letter addressed to Sofia. In it is a startling revelation.
Still dealing with the emotional wounds of her own personal trauma, Joanna embarks on a healing journey to Tuscany to understand her father’s history—and maybe come to understand herself as well. Joanna soon discovers that some would prefer the past be left undisturbed, but she has come too far to let go of her father’s secrets now . . .
27. Sparrow by L.J. Shen
Troy Brennan. Every Southie in Boston knows that name. The son of a dead mobster. The heart-throb with steel-blue eyes. "The Fixer" who can make or break you in this city.
Oh, and my new husband.
No one seemed to remember my name up until he barged into my life. But then he caged me. Kidnapped me. And killed every chance I had to run away from the place where we grew up.
Put simply, Troy Brennan clipped my wings.
I have dreams, big ones, but I doubt he'll ever let me chase them. I have no idea why he decided to take me as his wife. But I do know this: pissing off this man will not do me any good. At all.
28. Don't Lie to Me by Willow Rose
When twelve-year-old Sophie Williams went on a Girl Scout summer camp, she never returned home. Three months later, her body is found inside her sleeping bag in the most frequented area of Cocoa Beach, and the town is outraged. The girl isn't just any child. She's the town's most beloved surf idol, and it was believed that she could be the next Kelly Slater.
As another child, the son of a well-known senator is kidnapped, and the parents receive a disturbing video, FBI profiler Eva Rae Thomas — who has just returned to her hometown, divorced and out of a job—plunges into the investigation, breaking her promise to her children not to do police work again.
Local law enforcement, with her old flame Matt Miller in charge, are the ones who ask for her help in a case so unsettling that only she can solve it. But the deeper they dig, the deadlier it becomes for Matt and Eva Rae. Soon, everyone she holds dear is in grave danger as this case hits a little too close to home.
29. The First Mrs. Rothschild by Sara Aharoni
In this award-winning historical saga, passionate young lovers in a Jewish ghetto rise to become the foremost financial dynasty in the world.
It is the turn of the eighteenth century in Frankfurt, Germany, and young Gutle and Meir Amschel Rothschild struggle to establish themselves in the cramped and restricted Judengasse. But when Meir’s talents as a novice banker catch the attention of a German prince, Meir is suddenly afforded entrée into the European world of finance and nobility, and the Rothschilds’ lives are changed forever. As proud as Gutle is of her husband’s success, she is also cautious—very much aware of the fact that her husband’s rise is tied to his patrons’ willingness to “see past” his Jewishness. As their family grows, and a dream of fortune comes true, so does their belief that money will ultimately bring the power needed to establish Jewish civil rights.
30. The Kremlin Conspiracy by Joel C. Rosenberg
Everything he learned to protect our president, he must use to take out theirs.
With an American president distracted by growing tensions in North Korea and Iran, an ominous new threat is emerging in Moscow. A czar is rising in the Kremlin, a Russian president feverishly consolidating power, silencing his opposition, and plotting a brazen and lightning-fast military strike that could rupture the NATO alliance and bring Washington and Moscow to the brink of nuclear war. But in his blind spot is former U.S. Secret Service agent Marcus Ryker, trained to protect but ready to kill to save his country.
A Few Other Notes
Other popular Prime books you might enjoy are Harry Potter books 1 and 2, which have been available almost for as long as Prime Reading's been around. You'll have to subscribe to KU if you want the whole series, though. Another popular book that I often hear recommended is the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, which is definitely on my TBR list, but far below the many fiction novels I find more exciting. Also, if you have young children, don't forget to check out the many great children's books available through Prime Reading that are not included on this list. Popular kids' books like Pete the Cat and the Bad Seed are currently available through Prime Reading.
Have you taken advantage of any Prime Reading books? Which were your favorites?