Buy a Kindle… for your textbooks?

By Mir
July 21, 2011

I love this. No, I pink puffy heart this—now you can rent textbooks on your Kindle, which means the perfect indulgence gift for your college kid is now also the key to saving you up to 80% on textbooks!

Why, back in my day, we had to buy the books at the college bookstore. There was no Amazon! There was no choice! And my dinosaur complained when I loaded him up with all of those heavy tomes! Well, most of that is totally true.

This is almost enough to make me want to go back to college. Almost.


  1. That is AWESOME. I might go back to school because of this.

  2. I almost did this for some of my classes (I’m back for a second degree) on my nook, but they cost almost as much as buying the physical book (same price for the Kindle version, so no difference if I had a different e-reader). At the end of the semester, I could choose to either sell the physical book back or keep it. I chose to sell them back and made more than enough back from them (sold them to Amazon) to end up making it cheaper to have purchased them. A couple kids who purchased them in an e-format had problems when it came to an open-book test, since they weren’t allowed to have electronics for the test, so they had to figure out what to do for that. (The funny part was that particular class was my Digital Logic class!) I did end up buying most of my physical books online, though, to save money where I could.

    In the end, though, the biggest thing for me is that I remember things for tests in a spacial way. I remember where it was on the page (right or left; top, middle, or bottom of page; etc.) and that helps me remember the information I need in a pinch. It really helped out with my first programming class, because I could visualize programming syntax on the page. I figured this would be the case, since I recalled being like that with my first degree years ago, so I’m glad I thought of it before I went for the e-version.

    My back really wished my brain worked better in the e-format, though. I ended up buying a rolling cart thing to put my messenger bag on, because (of course) all my textbooks were math and sciences and were huge, heavy, and hardback. (Okay, I can’t blame the subject. My first degree was English, and those heavy anthology tomes did a number as well. And my Shakespeare book! Wowza! I guess the big difference now is that I’m a bit older…)

  3. Amazon also has a textbook trade-in program that appears to be cheaper than renting, so hopefully these prices will come down! For example, I have a textbook now for which I paid $98 and Amazon will give me a gift card for $76 when I am done with it. The kindle rental textbooks appear to be more expensive.

  4. I wish I could do this for my tiny high school girl, who now has one shoulder noticeably bigger than the other (“What hump?”) from carrying a pack that weighs 30 pounds. Outrageous!

  5. It’s the textbook of the future.

  6. My old High School Clearwater, FL (’79 grad) gave all of its students a Kindle last year and they have textbooks on it. Amazing!

  7. Food for thought, at my daughter’s school, (Ohio U), her professors like the kids to bring their books to class (nice, huh? lugging books all over campus), and do not allow electronic devices in the classroom. Rebekah said most of her professors do not want the electronic books, they require the physical version. Another new trend in text books is that a lot of professors are requiring “localized” versions of the text book–a book specific to OU, for example. She’s had great luck renting text books though.

    It’s an interesting idea, just be sure you’ll be allowed to use it.

  8. Did you just say “I pink puffy heart this”?

  9. My husband would love this! He wants one anyway and is taking classes.

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