Free eClassics Courtesy Of Google

03/18/2010 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

I recently read Emerson cover to cover, so to speak, on my iPhone's Kindle app -- a lesson both in Transcendentalism and the advantages of digitized literature.

My "complete Emerson" project would have been prohibitively expensive before e-readers. The print version of the standard 12-volume "Centenary" edition of Emerson's work, published in 1903-4, runs to hundreds, sometimes thousands, of dollars for a complete set. In e-book format, the Centenary is available from Amazon for $10. At Barnes & Noble, which offers Google's scans of a half million public-domain books, it's free.

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