Fantastic e-books you can download for free

You still probably won't finish them – but this time, at no cost!

Alternatives to London’s most crammed areas 5

Ulysses by James Joyce

Some books are there to be read, other books are there to be rubbed in people’s faces. Joyce’s modernist day in the life is definitely one of the latter. The trials and tribulations of Dubliner Leopold Bloom might not sound like a tough text on the surface, but this is a book that contains pages and pages dedicated to the protagonist on the toilet. Carry in the front pocket of a green tweed blazer for that “shabby intellectual” look.

Download it here

Alternatives to London’s most crammed areas 6

Heart Of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

The novel might start in Deptford, but there are no street-food vans in sight. Our narrator takes us back and forth to the grimmer days of the British Empire, and the search to find the mysterious Kurtz, who’s lost his mind somewhere down the Congo River. The book that inspired Apocalypse Now and the narrative style of The Great Gatsby.

Download it here

Alternatives to London’s most crammed areas 7

Slouching Towards Bethlehem by Joan Didion

Didion’s stock as a cultural figure has only risen with time – her air of detached cool and big sunglasses is now ubiquitous on Tumblr and Instagram. But there’s plenty of substance behind the style. This collection of short pieces, about John Wayne, Howard Hughes and the state of California, is one of her best. To be read whilst smoking imported cigarettes on a bench on Hampstead Heath.

Download it here


Alternatives to London’s most crammed areas 8

Of Human Bondage by Somerset Maugham

No, this isn’t the kind of book you’ll find in an opaque plastic wrapper in a service station, or a Czech mail order catalogue – it’s actually a hugely lauded tale of teenage longing and loneliness in the 1930s without a whip or chain in sight. Maugham’s work was a massive influence on generations of writers and, alongside Devon Aoki, he must be one of the only notable people named after a West Country county.

Download it here

Alternatives to London’s most crammed areas 9

The Trial by Franz Kafka

Somebody has been telling lies about Josef K. This is the story that predicted the paranoid social media generation before the television had even been invented. Kafka’s tale of a man put to trial and not even told what he’s done is a classic among art students (a Scottish indie band took their name from the title character) and civil liberties campaigners alike.

Download it here

Subscribe to the Mr Hyde daily email for free here