BookCrossing aims to be the world’s largest free book club. With a membership of almost 800,000 people in over 130 countries, if it already has not met that goal, it has got to be pretty darned close! BookCrossing’s idea of sharing the printed wealth is both novel and fun. If you love your books (but you are done reading them), set them free!
We all have books we’d like to just give away. We often have a list of books we’d also like to read and find on the cheap. The folks behind BookCrossing want to help us do both … for FREE. Register for a free membership and the world of BookCrossing becomes your literary oyster. Register the books you want to give away and then just leave them somewhere. Use the site to tell folks where you left them. Book seekers will find your books (which you mark with a BookCrossing statement), go back to the site, and register them as taken. Every time your books are subsequently released and picked up, you can follow along! If you are looking for a book, you can search on the site to see if anyone has released it into the wild and where you might find it. It’s like a huge treasure hunt for free books!
This site also features discussion groups and a store where you can get things such as stamps and sticky notes that can make “marking” your books even easier. Our favorite BookCrossing innovation is the BCZ or “Book Crossing Zone”. These are coffee shops and other public places that have signed on as actual host-sites for the leaving and retrieval of BookCrossing books. Tres cool, if we dare say so!
We librarians are giving types and we love to share our books. We are also fans of a great deal on books we want to read. For us, BookCrossing can become the ultimate enabler. We are already hooked!