The Amazon announcement of a Kindle Owners’ Lending Library is pretty awesome. If you have Amazon Prime and a hardware Kindle device, you can borrow one book a month (from the current list of available books), and keep it out as long as you want…for free! (well, as a perk included in the $79/year Prime sub. But still, a very good deal.)
begs raises the question; how to find a book you’d like? Do you have to tap around the interface on your Kindle, a click at a time? Are you stuck looking at the “most popular” list, because you can’t bear spending 10 minutes just to dig down further in the stack?
It’s very possible Amazon will update/fix this (and I hope they do, putting this post
out of business), but as of today, the way to search the lending list isn’t exactly intuitive. But the necessary info is there. A lendable book is identified by two attributes; it is “Prime eligible”, and its format is “Kindle Edition”.
Armed with this info, you can search from the Book Advanced Search page. Currently this works for me: http://www.amazon.com/Advanced-Search-Books/b/ref=sv_b_0?ie=UTF8&node=241582011 You can also get there by going to the main amazon.com page, choosing “Books” from the left-hand list of categories, and then choosing “Books” again (not “Kindle Books”) from the popup list. Then choose “Advanced Search” from the bar near the top of the screen.
Once you’re on the advanced search page, you can choose whatever search type you’d like: by author, publisher, or keywords…whatever you’d like. But once you’ve chosen your search criteria, make sure you choose “Kindle Edition” from the “Format” dropdown list. Then hit Search; that’s step 1 of 2.
Since you can’t currently limit searches to “Prime Eligible” directly from the Advanced Search page, you’ve got one more hoop. Once the search list comes up, scroll down the page until the “Amazon Prime — Prime Eligible” checkbox appears on the left hand side (it should be somewhere among the various other search criteria refinements). If you don’t see it at all, then the query you submitted resulted in no books that are in the lending library.
If you do see the “Amazon Prime — Prime Eligible” checkbox, check it. The book list will refresh, and the remaining books should all be available under the lending program!
Example: if I search for “physics” as a keyword on the Advanced Search page, and follow the instructions, I end up with (again, today) with this list of 6 books. A couple of these look pretty good!
Hope this helps. If you just want to click around and search the lending library on your computer, you can get to the entire list from the base Amazon page: http://amzn.to/kprimebooks (thanks to Andrys Basten for that link, plus the initial info that allowed me to track down the search attributes!)