The United States boasts roughly 16,000 public libraries. Yet many are off-limits due to COVID-19 and its variants.
But fear not, book worms!
There are many excellent ebook online libraries; and many offer fiction short stories, audiobooks, and full-length novels for free. Here are some of our favorites.
Choose from an online library with over 2,000 digitized classic works. With offerings from Shakespeare, the Bronte sisters, Mark Twain, Tolstoy, and Jane Austen, one could spend months on this Bibliomania!
Though their collection is extensive, the user interface is not entirely intuitive. To find free online fiction, locate the ‘read’ icon on the left sidebar, and select ‘fiction’ in the dropdown. From there, you’ll see a lengthy selection of renowned authors and classic works to choose from.
One extra bit of guidance: chapters are subdivided into pages; to move on, click the tiny arrow in the orange header. Now you’re all set to unlock a world of wonders built by some of the greatest creative minds throughout the ages!
- Gravity Tales
With Fantasy, Xianxia, Romantic, Historical, and Game genres, Gravity Tales has something for every avid fiction reader. Their website is easy to navigate, and allows users to create profiles, meaning they can track their reading history. Likewise, each book has an eye-catching cover, a short description, and an audience ranking (on a 0-10 scale).
The main thing that sets this platform apart is that each work was originally written in Korean or Chinese, and has since been translated to English to increase readership. (Another platform with translated fiction novels is Wuxia World, though it doesn’t have the same licensing standards as Gravity Tales.) Individuals who enjoy fiction and Asian mythology will likely fall in love with Gravity Tales!
This platform easily ranks as one of the best ebook online libraries, particularly when it comes to fiction! Fictionate.Me boasts a diverse offering of fiction short stories, audiobooks, and full-length novels in the following genres:
- short story
- Urban fantasy
- and virtual reality
Like Gravity Tales, Fictionate.Me has fantastic user interface that allows you to find just the read you’re looking for within minutes. Likewise, users are able to create profiles where they can pick up on stories right where you left off and even comment on books while reading.
Another respectable feature of Fictionate.Me is their commitment to compensating self-published authors. Some books and chapters are placed behind paywalls, while others are free. Either way, you’ll enjoy fresh new writing talent and have an opportunity to enter a new world with each ebook.
And finally, many authors on Fictionate.Me release their novels chapter-by-chapter, which definitely satisfies the quick and eager readers.
- Teen Ink
If the name didn’t tip you off already, Teen Ink is a platform that features written works by teenage authors. However, it would be a mistake to look down on them for their youth—these kids can write! The fiction section on Teen Ink houses over ten thousand pages of fiction that’s free and fun to read.
Teen Ink uses a ranking system to prioritize the four most popular works of fiction each day. Similarly, they feature the four most discussed pieces each day—which is determined by the number of comments on each article. The comment section creates a more interactive user experience, where readers may get in touch with their favorite authors and ask their most burning questions.
Manybooks has a clean and inviting web presence and attracts a wide variety of readers. This online library has been around for nearly two decades and formerly partnered with Project Gutenberg. Through the partnership, Manybooks gained access to thousands of classics in ebook form.
In more recent years, Manybooks has expanded even further and now features work from up and coming self-published fiction authors. Two of their most popular genres are historical fiction and science fiction, and both categories include classic works as well as fresh new written material.
Perhaps the most appealing feature of this site is that it’s free to use!
- Open Culture
This platform is devoted to providing free, educational materials to the public. With numerous online courses, over 1,000 free classics in audiobook form and 800+ ebooks, it’s safe to say they’re doing a great job of increasing accessibility.
At its core, Open Culture is a resource for eager readers, students, and anyone who would like to expand their intellectual capacity through media consumption. To begin reading fiction, select the ebooks tab along the top banner. You’ll then enter a scroll-a-thon of classic titles. (Pro: the options feel endless. Con: the only categorization is an alphabetical list.)
Finally, Open Culture allows readers to easily download short stories, ebooks, and audiobooks to their Kindle, iPad and iPhone. (That’s one of the top reasons we quite like it!)
Reading is one of the best ways to time travel. Or visit foreign countries. Or maybe even places that don’t entirely exist in our universe. Reading allows us to enter the mind of others and ‘meet’ strangers, heroes, ghouls, and trolls.
And thanks to Bibliomania, Gravity Tales, Fictionate.Me, Teen Ink, Manybooks, and Open Culture, readers can experience a seemingly never-ending series of adventures just by opening their laptop. So, for those of you who searched ‘what is the best online fiction library’, I hope you find this four-way-tie satisfactory.
Author’s Bio: May Gauthier is an Orlando-based freelancer, who feels exceptionally weird writing about herself in third person. She frequently collaborates with fictionate.me, an ebook online library, which features everything from vampires and zombies to evil koalas. She hopes you found this article helpful!