Of the top 50 eBooks on Amazon’s current Kindle bestseller list, 32 currently have a list price of $0.00. A few of the free eBooks on the list are pre-1923 public domain works, such as Pride and Prejudice and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Most of the free eBooks, however, are still under copyright protection and have been released by publishers who want to drum up interest in current or future releases from their authors.
Take the current #1 bestseller, Andrew Gross’s The Dark Tide. It’s available “for a limited time” at the low, low price of zero dollars. “This price was set by the publisher,” an Amazon note says. The reason for the discounted price can be found below the cover image, where it’s helpfully suggested that you “pre-order Andrew Gross’s new book, Reckless, available April 27th.”