Read 700 Free eBooks Made Available by the University of California Press

mark twain uc press

The Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­i­for­nia Press e‑books col­lec­tion holds books pub­lished by UCP (and a select few print­ed by oth­er aca­d­e­m­ic press­es) between 1982–2004. The gen­er­al pub­lic cur­rent­ly has access to 770 books through this ini­tia­tive. The col­lec­tion is dynam­ic, with new titles being added over time.

Read­ers look­ing to see what the col­lec­tion holds can browse by sub­ject. The cura­tors of the site have kind­ly pro­vid­ed a sec­ond brows­ing page that shows only the pub­licly acces­si­ble books, omit­ting any frus­trat­ing off-lim­its titles.

The collection’s strengths are in his­to­ry (par­tic­u­lar­ly Amer­i­can his­to­ry and the his­to­ry of Cal­i­for­nia and the West); reli­gion; lit­er­ary stud­ies; and inter­na­tion­al stud­ies (with strong selec­tions of Mid­dle East­ern Stud­ies, Asian Stud­ies, and French Stud­ies titles).

A quick browse yields a mul­ti­tude of inter­est­ing pos­si­bil­i­ties for future read­ing: Shel­ley Streeby’s 2002 book about sen­sa­tion­al lit­er­a­ture and dime nov­els in the nine­teenth-cen­tu­ry Unit­ed States; Luise White’s intrigu­ing-look­ing Speak­ing with Vam­pires: Rumor and His­to­ry in Colo­nial Africa (2000); and Karen Lystra’s 2004 re-exam­i­na­tion of Mark Twain’s final years. (The image above comes from anoth­er Twain text by Ran­dall Knop­er.) Two oth­er note­wor­thy texts include Roland Barthes’ Inci­dents and Hugh Ken­ner’s Chuck Jones: A Flur­ry of Draw­ings.

Sad­ly, you can’t down­load the books to an e‑reader or tablet. Hap­pi­ly, there is a “book­bag” func­tion that you can use to store your titles, if you need to leave the site and come back.

As always, we’d encour­age you to vis­it our col­lec­tion of 800 Free eBooks for iPad, Kin­dle & Oth­er Devices, where we recent­ly added texts by Vladimir Nabokov, Philip K. Dick and oth­ers. Also find free cours­es in our list of 1,700 Free Online Cours­es from Top Uni­ver­si­ties.

Rebec­ca Onion is a writer and aca­d­e­m­ic liv­ing in Philadel­phia. She runs’s his­to­ry blog, The Vault. Fol­low her on Twit­ter:@rebeccaonion.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

Free: The Met­ro­pol­i­tan Muse­um of Art and the Guggen­heim Offer 474 Free Art Books Online

Read 18 Short Sto­ries From Nobel Prize-Win­ning Writer Alice Munro Free Online

30 Free Essays & Sto­ries by David Fos­ter Wal­lace on the Web

Down­load 14 Great Sci-Fi Sto­ries by Philip K. Dick as Free Audio Books and Free eBooks

Down­load 20 Pop­u­lar High School Books Avail­able as Free eBooks & Audio Books

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Comments (20)
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  • Ferdous says:


  • de troya says:

    This is the mes­sage I get ” Access Restrict­ed

    The book you seek in the UC Press E‑Books Col­lec­tion, 1982–2004 — Eat­ing right in the Renais­sance, Albala, Ken 1964- — is avail­able only to Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­i­for­nia staff, fac­ul­ty, and stu­dents. If you are a mem­ber of the UC com­mu­ni­ty and are off cam­pus, you must use the proxy serv­er for your cam­pus to access the title.

    If you are not affil­i­at­ed with the Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­i­for­nia, please vis­it our pub­lic browse page, which fea­tures over 500 schol­ar­ly mono­graphs freely avail­able to the pub­lic.

    If you would like to pur­chase Eat­ing right in the Renais­sance, Albala, Ken 1964- from the pub­lish­er, click the but­ton below.”

  • Hans says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!… very much, indeed.

  • adoan says:

    Uno­match is the eas­i­est and most pop­u­lar social net­work to keep in close con­tact with your friends/family and to social­ize with new peo­ple world…

  • Sadia Ahmed says:

    Great news
    E Books

  • Rhazya says:

    “Sad­ly, you can’t down­load the books to an e‑reader or tablet.”

    That should have been the first sen­tence or a dis­claimer as soon as you got to this page‑I got excit­ed over noth­ing. I’m sor­ry I don’t read ebooks on my lap­top or desk­top. I use my ebook read­er as an escape from the pre­vi­ous­ly men­tioned devices. Call it an io-book (inter­net only) or some­thing more fit­ting…

  • Eric says:

    @ “Sad­ly…”:
    1.Open the page of the UC Press E‑book;
    2.Press but­ton “Print view”;
    3.Save Page As… Web Page (.htm);
    4.Calibre can con­vert .htm file to .epub, .mobi or oth­er for­mats.

  • Engagement Ring says:

    Get Best Dia­mond, Gold and Ster­ling Sil­ver Neck­laces, Bracelets, Engage­ment and Wed­ding Rings for him and her, Bridal Sets, Pen­dants, Ear­rings online.

  • panko crums says:

    on stand by; could be last nite. **** GODSPEED .…

  • Open Culture says:

    Just curi­ous, does any­one know who just gave our post a men­tion on Facebook?nCheers,nDan/editor

  • Dadhi Ram Panthi says:

    Great!Please tell the read­ers how to down­load them!

  • isilveira24 says:


  • John Bourdo says:

    Selec­tions on Asian His­to­ry Avail­able for “Free” only to UC Fac­ul­ty, Staff and stu­dents.

  • clic aqui says:

    Lam­en­ta­ble­mente no son pocas las per­sonas no leen por fal­ta de tiem­po o de ganas. Pien­san que no tiene sen­ti­do habi­en­do otras opciones de entreten­imien­to o que los libros no están hechos para ellas. No se paran a pen­sar qué es lo que la lec­tura de libros les puede lle­gar a apor­tar

  • clic aqui says:

    Y no sola­mente eso, sino que la lec­tura de libros nos hace libres y com­bat­en el abur­rim­ien­to, nos hace más inteligentes, fomen­ta el desar­rol­lo per­son­al y pro­fe­sion­al, favorece la con­ver­sación y las rela­ciones, lib­era emo­ciones, es el ejer­ci­cio para man­ten­er un cere­bro sano y ani­ma­do, además de ser un antí­do­to con­tra la soledad.

  • libros electronicos says:

    En la actu­al­i­dad, la rev­olu­ción dig­i­tal no ha deja­do de lado a los libros y ya hemos deja­do de acu­mu­la­r­los en papel y alma­ce­nar­los en grandes bib­liote­cas para poder con­tener mil­lones de libros en sen­cil­los dis­pos­i­tivos elec­tróni­cos.

  • Yuvan raj says:

    It’s great to see that the Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­i­for­nia Press has made such a vast col­lec­tion of eBooks avail­able for free. With over 700 titles to choose from, there is cer­tain­ly some­thing for every­one. This is a fan­tas­tic oppor­tu­ni­ty for any­one who loves to read and wants to explore a vari­ety of gen­res and top­ics with­out hav­ing to pay for each ebook. Thank you for shar­ing this incred­i­ble resource, it will def­i­nite­ly keep me busy for a long time!

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