A unique online initiative is bridging book lovers and helping them share their personal collections.
Read A Book is a book-sharing community with about 400 members. Even if you have just two books or no book at all, you can be a part of this community.
Two bibliophiles launched the altruistic initiative two years ago. They pay for the delivery of books.
You can request a book and it will be delivered to your doorstep within seven days. You can donate books to the community.
The idea is to share books simply gathering dust on the shelves, as well as get hold of books from others' collection.
How it works
A Facebook page called 'Read A Book' is the point of contact. When you hit the 'Book now' button, it opens a Google document. Along with your address, you enter the title of the book you would like to read.
If the book is available within the community, it will be delivered by courier or hand within seven days.
You can keep a book for a month. Once you are done with the reading, someone from 'Read A Book' will collect the book. No charges applied.
Some members own about 1,000 books, while others have just two or three.
Fiction is the mainstay of the community at the moment. Members keep track of all new publications and bestsellers.
Some books popular in the network now are An Unsuitable Boy, Shantaram, Catcher in the Rye, The Fountainhead, The Diary of a Wimpy Kid, and Train to Pakistan.
"Some readers want books in Kannada. We will go in for Kannada books if more people ask for it," said Kanica Jindal, founder of the community.
At the moment, her sheer love of books is fuelling the service, but readers are wondering whether it is sustainable.
Monish Koppa, partner, Rent A Book, says: "Some prefer paperbacks to Kindle e-books even in today's digital era. The pleasure of reading physical books is unique."
He believes sharing books is healthy and promotes discussion. Once a month, members come together offline and discuss their favourite books.
* Go to Facebook page Rent A Book.
* Click on the 'Book Now' button.
* Enter the title of the book you want to read.
* It is couriered or hand-delivered to you.
* Read and return it after a month.
* No charges. It's completely free!