I came across this cute little site yesterday with the tag line “free ebooks by the gals” and I was instantly enamored. The site was started and is run by Laura McDonald who says she’s “finally making use of her BA in English she got 10 years ago”. Her day job is as project manager for Dynabytes a website design company located in Menard, Texas. As the title and tagline suggests Girlebooks provides free e-books by women authors.

The E-books

If you don’t know what an e-book is, in a nut shell, it is an electronic version of a printed book. It comes in different formats so it can be viewed on your computer or a special e-book reading device.

There are currently twenty e-books (and growing) with well known women authors such as Jane Austen, Mary Shelley, Helen Keller, Emily Bronte, and Virginia Woolf. The website’s goal is also to share other women writers who may have been overlooked but are equally talented and worth our reading time. The latest book selections include Little Women, Wuthering Heights, Middlemarch, Jacob’s Room, One of Ours, North and South, Persuasion and Anne of Green Gables.

There are four options for downloading the books so people of all technology levels can enjoy reading their selections. The options include plain text, adobe PDF, eReader PDF, and Microsoft Reader Lit. You can look at the book in plain text but it would be hard to read because it lacks formatting and would be a waste of time to format yourself. I personally prefer Adobe for reading on the computer and the Adobe Reader is free if you don’t already have it on your computer. The adobe files are nicely formatted and a good text size for reading. All books can be saved on your computer for future reading.

The Blog

Laura, with the help of Joyce McDonald and Lauren McDowell, blog about updates for the latest e-books added to the site, technical information, reviews of books not available in their offerings and any other news relating to the site and literary world. The good thing about blogs these days is that you can add them to your RSS feed to learn about the updates without visiting the site. They are currently open to having other contributors to the blog.

I really enjoyed my visit to Girlebooks and even made a small donation via their paypal link. The site is clean, esthetically pleasing (with just a little hint of pink to make it girly) and easy to surf. I’m positive you’ll enjoy your visit and most definitely find something to read.

Visit Girlebooks to read classic and contemporary books by women writers.

Originally posted 9/8/2007 at Literary Fiction, BellaOnline.

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