For the past 3 months, I was able to get a 3 month free trial for Kindle Unlimited (thanks Black Friday!). I’ve been using it a lot, and this past month I decided to read nothing but Kindle Unlimited books to see if it was worth the money.
For those of you who don’t know, Kindle unlimited is amazon’s book borrowing service. It costs $9.99 a month, and you can borrow ten books before you have to return 1 to get another. You can keep the books for as long as you want, and then return them, find other things to read, rinse repeat. It’s a pretty useful service if you read a lot of books, but is it worth the subscription fee?
I’m going to just write down my thoughts in a numbered list of pros and cons, because I honestly have mixed feelings about it. The library is extensive, that’s to be sure, but there are definitely cons to what is available in the Kindle Unlimited library, because any book in the program has to be exclusively sold on Amazon. But I’ll get into that more as we get into the list, which will be right now!
- As I just said, there’s a big library of books to borrow. But, because of the Kindle Unlimited exclusivity, there’s more self-published books than not. I’m not saying that self-published is bad, I’ve found a lot of gems in the fantasy section which is what I read. But not having access to traditionally published stuff is a bit of a con, as if you have Unlimited, you’d have to pay the $9.99 subscription fee, and also buy books you’d want to read that aren’t in the Unlimited program. Money wise, that would add up pretty quickly if you read a lot, which I do so that’s part of the reason why I’m torn on the service.
- Because you have access to such a big selection of books, and only have to pay a flat fee, there is more freedom to read more and not worry about spending a ton of money. When I first got back into reading, I spent about 50 dollars on buying a lot of books, and it wasn’t nearly as many as I’ve read on Kindle Unlimited. Now sometimes the quality of read is shotty, you have about a 50/50 chance of it being amazing, or really bad. But, you have the same chances with a traditionally published book, because everyone’s reading preferences are different. I did some approximate math on all the books I’ve read, and I saved a lot more money reading on Kindle Unlimited exclusively for the past few months, and was just as satisfied with my reads.
- I find myself reading more, because you can check out ten books, and it’s free. Well, not free, but you get my drift: the subscription fee helps you just look at a book, see if you like it, and download it. If you don’t like it, you don’t have to kick yourself over wasting money on a book. I’ve found myself reading a synopses of a book, downloading, reading a bit and not liking it and just DNFing and returning the book. Whereas if I had spent money on the book and not liked it, I would have forced myself to finish it so I wouldn’t have wasted my money, and been dissatisfied with the read. So once again, a pro in the freedom category, because you don’t feel obligated to finish a borrowed book. If you don’t like it, just return like you would at the library.
- I’ve gone back and forth about one major question. I’ve been using this 3 month free trial, but if I had to pay for it, would I? And my answer is…maybe. I’m going to keep it for an extra month, because I’ve found a lot of authors that I like and are coming out with books in the month of March. But after that, I think I’m going to try a month without it, and see how I like it. There are a lot of books I’ve been putting off buying because I’ve had Kindle Unlimited, so this is a bit of a half pro, half con. Because while I can read a lot of good books on this service, I’ve been putting off books I’ve wanted to read for a while because I have access to the borrowing program. This is more on me, nothing is stopping me from straight up buying books, but just the fact that I don’t have to buy if I want to read is a factor in itself for me. Of course it’s up to everybody, that probably isn’t a factor for someone else, but it does stall me with reads I’ve had on the backburner for months and haven’t purchased yet. So if you have the same sort of mindset as I do, just something to consider.
I think that’s pretty much everything I wanted to cover. I like Kindle Unlimited for what it does, and it’s fun to have access to so many books. Like I said, I’m a bit torn on whether it’s worth it or not, we’ll see how I feel when I’ve paid for a month of service.
Have you tried Kindle Unlimited? How do you like it. Leave your thoughts in the comments below!