15 Unique Ways To Earn Money Just By Reading Books

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If you’re an avid reader, there’s good news: there are many legitimate ways to turn your reading habit into an income stream. This post will break down some of the most creative and effective methods to get paid to read books. From freelance proofreading to audiobook narration, there’s something for every book enthusiast.

1. Freelance Proofreading and Editing

If you have an eye for detail, proofreading or editing could be a lucrative side hustle. With the rise of self-publishing, many authors need help to polish their work.

How to Get Started:

  • Begin by finding clients on platforms like Fiverr.
  • Network in Facebook groups and among students of self-publishing courses.


  • Starting rates can be around $100 for every 10,000 words, with potential to increase as you gain experience.


  • Not only can you earn money, but you also get to read interesting books.

Success Story

One freelance editor shared that they began their journey on Fiverr, offering their services at a competitive rate. Over time, they gained positive reviews and word-of-mouth referrals, which allowed them to raise their rates and secure a steady stream of clients. This path provided not only financial benefits but also exposure to various genres and writing styles, enriching their reading experience.

2 Amazon Influencer Program

The Amazon Influencer Program is an accessible way to earn money by reviewing books.

How It Works:

  • Create short review videos for books you’ve read.
  • Amazon features these videos on the book’s page.


  • You receive a commission of 2-4% of the sales price when a purchase is made through your video.
  • Influencers like Tyler Christensen have made over $2,000 per month.

Application Requirements:

  • List one or more social media accounts (YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, TikTok).
  • No specific follower count is required, and you can re-apply if initially rejected.

Getting Started

To join the Amazon Influencer Program, you need to sign up with your social media accounts. Once accepted, start creating engaging review videos. These should be concise and informative, providing potential buyers with valuable insights about the books. As your videos gain traction, you’ll start earning commissions from sales generated through your reviews.

3. Kirkus Review

Kirkus offers a platform where you can get paid for writing book reviews.


  • Earn $50-75 for 350-word reviews.


  • Submit your resume, writing samples, and favorite book genres or specialties.


  • Reviews are due within two weeks of receiving the book.

The Review Process

When you join Kirkus, you’ll be assigned books based on your stated preferences. You have two weeks to read and review each book. Your reviews should be honest and constructive, helping authors improve their work and providing readers with reliable insights. This job not only pays but also keeps you updated with the latest publications across various genres.

4. US Review of Books

Another platform to consider is the US Review of Books.



  • Send in your resume, work samples, and at least two professional references.


  • Complete your 250-300 word review within 2-3 weeks.

Review Assignments

The US Review of Books assigns books to reviewers based on their preferences and expertise. You have 2-3 weeks to complete each review. These reviews help authors and publishers by providing them with honest feedback that they can use for marketing purposes. The compensation varies based on the complexity and length of the book.

5. Online Book Club

Online Book Club pays for book reviews, providing a range of payment options based on the book.



  • Sign up, choose from a selection of books, and submit your review after reading.


  • After your first review is approved, you’re eligible for future paid reviews.

Membership Benefits

As a member of Online Book Club, you gain access to a wide range of books. You choose the ones you want to review, ensuring that you’re always reading something that interests you. This platform not only pays for reviews but also provides free copies of the books you review, making it an excellent way to build your personal library.

6. Freelance Book Reviewer

You can also set up a freelance book review profile on platforms like Upwork.


  • Many reviewers have completed over 200 jobs with rates ranging from $35-60 per hour.

Job Search:

  • Look for roles such as “book coach” and “book editor” on job listing sites like FlexJobs.

Building a Profile

To become a successful freelance book reviewer, create a comprehensive profile on Upwork or similar platforms. Highlight your experience, favorite genres, and any relevant qualifications. Apply for jobs regularly and build a portfolio of reviews. As you gain positive feedback from clients, you can increase your rates and attract more high-paying gigs.

7. Audiobook Narration

If you enjoy reading aloud, consider becoming an audiobook narrator.


  • Professional narrators can earn $200-1000+ per title.

Skills Required:

  • Acting experience is beneficial, along with knowledge of audio engineering equipment and software.

Getting Started:

  • Create a profile and start auditioning for projects.

Narration Tips

Successful audiobook narrators often have a background in acting or public speaking. To get started, invest in quality recording equipment and familiarize yourself with audio editing software. Create sample recordings to showcase your voice and narration style. Audition for projects on platforms like ACX and build a portfolio of completed audiobooks.

9. Reedsy Discovery

Reedsy Discovery is another platform where you can monetize your reading habit.


  • Access to new books and potential earnings from reader tips.


  • Earn $1, $3, or $5 tips from readers who enjoy your reviews.


  • Share your favorite genres, reading frequency, review platforms, and social media accounts if applicable.

Engaging with Readers

On Reedsy Discovery, reviewers can earn tips from readers who appreciate their reviews. To maximize your earnings, write detailed, insightful reviews that help readers make informed decisions. Engage with your audience through comments and social media to build a following and increase your chances of receiving tips.

10. Booklist

Booklist reviews help guide library purchasing decisions and is part of the American Library Association.


  • Earn $15 for each 150-175 word review.


  • Average reviewers write 2-3 reviews per month.


  • No library degree required, but experience in library advisory or selection is advantageous.

Review Guidelines

Booklist provides a platform for reviewers to influence library acquisitions. While the pay is modest, this role offers the opportunity to read a wide variety of books and contribute to library collections. Follow the review guidelines carefully to ensure your reviews are published and maintain a consistent review output to maximize earnings.

11. Create Book Summaries

Creating book summaries can be an effective way to communicate the main ideas of a book quickly.


  • Companies like Blinkist hire people to create book summaries.


  • Summaries can be shared on websites, newsletters, or YouTube channels and monetized through advertising or affiliate partnerships.


  • Consider using AI tools like Pictory to help create videos.

Sharing Knowledge

Book summaries are a valuable resource for busy readers who want to grasp the key points of a book quickly. Create a blog, YouTube channel, or newsletter to share your summaries. Monetize your content through ads, sponsorships, and affiliate marketing. By consistently producing high-quality summaries, you can build a loyal audience and generate a steady income.

12. Start an Online Book Club

Starting an online book club for kids or adults can be a unique way to get paid to read.


  • Teacher Helen on Outschool earned $98 an hour by running a reading club.


  • There may be demand for higher grade level books as well.

Club Management

An online book club offers a platform for readers to discuss books and share insights. Use platforms like Outschool to organize and promote your book club. Charge a membership fee or earn through platforms that pay educators. Focus on creating engaging discussions and activities to keep members interested and returning for more.

13. Become a Translator

If you’re bilingual, translating books can be a profitable venture.

Skills Required:

  • Good grammar, cultural knowledge, conversational competence, and the ability to articulate complex concepts.

Job Sites:

Translation Projects

As a book translator, you’ll work on converting texts from one language to another while maintaining the original meaning and tone. Join translation job sites to find projects that match your language skills. Build a portfolio of translated works to showcase your expertise and attract more clients. Fast, accurate typing skills and a quiet workspace will help you complete projects efficiently.

14. Public Domain Publishing

Publishing public domain books can be a rewarding way to earn royalties.


  • Aaron Kerr has made over $110k in royalties by publishing public domain books like the Anne of Green Gables series.

How to Get Started:

  • Find public domain books, download copies, and format them for Kindle publishing.

15. Finding Public Domain Books

Public domain books are works whose copyrights have expired, making them free to use. To get started, identify popular public domain books and download their texts. Format the texts for Kindle or other e-book platforms and create attractive covers. Publish your editions and market them to readers looking for classic literature. Use tools like Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) to manage your books and track sales.

Apply Book Knowledge to Your Own Business

Using the knowledge gained from reading books can be a significant advantage for your own business.


  • Books condense a lifetime of experience and expertise into a few hundred pages.


  • Titles like The 4-Hour Workweek, Building a StoryBrand, and The ONE Thing can provide valuable insights that pay dividends over time.

Leveraging Knowledge

Reading business and self-improvement books can provide you with strategies and insights to grow your own business. Apply the lessons learned from these books to improve your operations, marketing, and productivity. Share your learnings through blog posts, podcasts, or workshops to establish yourself as an expert in your field and attract clients or customers.

Conclusion: The Best Way to Get Paid to Read

In this article, we’ve explored numerous ways to get paid for reading books, including:

  • Freelance editing and proofreading
  • Writing book reviews
  • Creating book summaries
  • Narrating audiobooks

However, the value comes from what you do with the knowledge you gain from reading and how it serves others. The best method for you will depend on your interests, goals, and expertise. Start with one or two ways that sound interesting and see if you enjoy the work. Happy reading!

Additional Tips for Success

  1. Build a Portfolio: Regardless of the path you choose, creating a portfolio of your work is essential. Showcase your best reviews, summaries, or translations to attract clients and employers.
  2. Network: Join online communities and forums related to book reviewing, proofreading, or audiobook narration. Networking can lead to job opportunities and valuable industry insights.
  3. Stay Updated: The book industry is constantly evolving. Keep up with the latest trends, tools, and platforms to stay competitive and enhance your skills.
  4. Time Management: Balancing multiple projects or clients can be challenging. Develop a schedule that allows you to meet deadlines while maintaining high-quality work.
  5. Continuous Learning: Invest in courses or workshops to improve your writing, editing, or narration skills. Continuous learning can open up new opportunities and increase your earning potential.

By following these tips and exploring the various ways to get paid for reading books, you can turn your passion for reading into a rewarding and profitable endeavor. Whether you choose to review books, narrate audiobooks, or start an online book club, there are numerous opportunities to monetize your love for literature.