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05-12-12, 01:00 PM
Got a Kindle and an Amazon Prime membership and want to read the Harry Potter books (again)? Starting June 19, people who can answer yes to those questions can read all 7 of J.K. Rowling's volumes for free through Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html/?docId=1000739811). The British bestselling author agreed to offer one free Kindle version of a Harry Potter title a month through Amazon's lending library (which is only accessible to users with an Amazon Prime membership).

Currently, Amazon's e-library is stocked with 145,000 titles, and users can download one of those titles per month to any of Amazon's line of Kindles. Amazon Prime memberships cost $79 per year and includes free shipping on physical orders and online video streaming, so technically the titles aren't totally free. But if you order from Amazon frequently, or watch movies from Amazon's streaming service, the lending library becomes a bonus.

Rowling refused to allow the Harry Potter series to be sold electronically for years; by some reports (http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2402192,00.asp), that resistance came from the fear that the novels would be pirated more easily. Only this March were readers finally able to access the young adult novels from online e-book stores, so the news that Rowling has permitted Amazon to lend the books out for free electronically represents a significant shift in attitude toward electronic copies.

Read more on Ars Technica‚?¶ (http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2012/05/getting-your-witchcraft-and-wizardry-on-for-free/)

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