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WedSep 18

Read An eBook Day – September 18, 2024

Read An eBook Day is observed every September 18 to celebrate the 24/7 reading accessibility and ease that ebooks offer. Can you imagine that although the idea of an ebook was born in 1930, it wasn’t until 41 years later that it came into existence? An ebook (electronic book) is a book presented in digital format that people can read on dedicated e-readers, mobile phones, tablets, or P.Cs. An ebook can contain texts, images, or both. Due to ebooks’ accessibility and immense popularity, many classics and old bestselling books have been republished as ebooks. Even many authors are now choosing to mainly publish their books only in ebook format.

History of Read An eBook Day

The idea of an ebook was born in 1930 after Rob Brown watched his first talkie — movies with sound. He introduced this idea in his manifesto, explaining what he envisioned the future for books should look like.

In 1949, a Spanish teacher, Angela Ruiz Robles invented the first automated book reader, the Enciclopedia Mecánica. Texts and graphics were loaded onto the device using spools and operated with compressed air. Robles’ idea of an automated reader was born out of the desire to reduce the number of books that kids had to carry to school every day. However, the device never went into mass production, and the prototype ended up at the National Museum of Science and Technology in A Coruña.

Despite Robles’ invention, it would take 22 years for the first ebook to appear, and that was by a stroke of luck and the introduction of the internet. After being given unprecedented computer time, Michael Hart decided to type his copy of the Declaration of Independence into a computer in plain text. He then shared it on the ARPANET to be freely downloaded by everyone. That led to the founding of Project Gutenberg, which focused on creating electronic copies of texts and publications.

The late 1980s and the 2000s saw different inventions and innovations that helped shape the ebook into what it is today, including the introduction of the first e-readers, standardization of ebook formats, and online ebook stores.

In 2014, OverDrive got the idea to create a day to celebrate the existence of ebooks. That eventually led to the annual celebration of Read An Ebook Day every September 18.

Read An eBook Day timeline

The Readies

Bob Brown introduces the concept of an ebook in his manifesto, “The Readies.”

Project Gutenberg

Michael Hart launches Project Gutenberg to create electronic copies of texts and books.

Ebook is now commercial

BiblioBytes introduces a website for selling ebooks on the internet.

Read An Ebook Day is Born

OverDrive, an ebook distribution company, launches Read An Ebook Day.

Read An eBook Day FAQs

Can you print an ebook?

Due to the limitations imposed by publishers and copyright, it’s not possible to print an entire ebook. However, you can print a percentage of the ebook for your reading.

Where can I download ebooks for free?

Websites that can legally download ebooks online for free include Project Gutenberg, Open Library, Internet Archive, P.D.F. Books World, Planet ebook, and Amazon Free Kindle Books.

What do I need to read an ebook?

There are several ways you can read an ebook, depending on what you find to be comfortable for you. There are dedicated ebook devices like Amazon’s Kindle, Barnes & Noble’s NOOK, and Sony Reader that are mainly for reading ebooks. You can also download ebook readers on your tablet, smartphone, laptop, or desktop and read your eBooks on it.

Read An eBook Day Activities

  1. Read an ebook

    What better way is there to celebrate Read An eBook Day than to read an ebook?! You can use this day to read one of your favorite books or the next book on your reading list that is available in ebook format. Enjoy a cup of coffee, tea, or hot choco while reading. You can also go to your favorite spot in the city and read the ebook.

  2. Start an ebook club

    An ebook club offers a lot more options than your average book club. That means you can meet online and collaborate on your reading. Also, you won't have to wait for the print copy of a book before starting your reading. Starting an ebook club is not as complicated as it may seem. Invite a few friends to work together with you on it, write a list of books that should be read for the first months, set meeting times, and promote your club on social media and event websites.

  3. Write and publish your first ebook

    Another way to celebrate Read An eBook Day as an aspiring author is to write your first ebook. In this internet age, getting your book out there is easier than ever. Using tools like, Google Docs, Calibre, and Scrivener, you can convert your novel into ebook formats within minutes at little to no cost. You can even have it for purchase online within hours with platforms like Amazon Kindle Direct, NOOK Press, Lulu, and Google Play.

5 Interesting Facts About EBooks That You Don't Know

  1. A Bible commentary is the longest ebook

    The MacArthur New Testament Commentary is the longest single ebook, equivalent to 13,080 print pages.

  2. Fiction reigns supreme

    Fiction is the highest-selling ebook genre.

  3. 56,000 ebooks every 30 days

    Every month, about 56,000 ebooks are self-published and released for readers' consumption.

  4. Only a minority consume just ebooks

    According to statistics, it's just 7% of the American adult population that only read ebooks.

  5. Print books still outsell ebooks

    Despite the global pandemic, sales of print books increased by 13.2%, and that of ebooks fell by 8%, compared to 2020.

Why We Love Read An eBook Day

  1. eBooks are sustainable

    Unlike print books, you don't have to cut down trees to publish ebooks. Also, you don’t need a dedicated room or library to store ebooks. That helps reduce your carbon footprint and the impact of climate change.

  2. eBooks are accessible

    Since ebooks are available online, you can quickly go to an online store, search for the latest book from your favorite author, and buy and download it in less than 10 minutes. With your smartphone, e-reader, or tablet, you can store hundreds of ebooks, placing information at your fingertips. These save you the time of driving to a bookstore or lugging books with you.

  3. eBooks make it easier to become an author

    With ebooks, you can have a book written today and publish it by the following day. You don’t need to have an entire editorial team or the backing of a major book publisher. That is especially helpful if you are a new author looking to build their experience or have a limited budget.

Read An eBook Day dates

2024September 18Wednesday
2025September 18Thursday
2026September 18Friday
2027September 18Saturday
2028September 18Monday

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