You have lots of options for finding and enjoying vintage fiction. You can borrow or buy; read, listen, or watch.
I suggest you start close to home with your local library and local bookstore. If you’re lucky, you may find a kindred spirit who will remember your tastes and tip you off to books you might otherwise miss.
The list below represents only a tiny fraction of your options on the Web.
Libraries let you read/listen/view for free.
Librarians can point you to sources of titles they can get for you from other libraries. Most libraries belong to some library system.
Ask your local librarian how you can access that system from your home computer.
You may also want to check WorldCat. With 1 billion items in its members’ holdings, WorldCat [OCLC] is the world’s largest network of library content and services.
Whether you’re looking for popular books, music CDs, audiobooks, or videos—you can probably find them on WorldCat.
You may also find article citations with links to their full text; authoritative research materials, such as documents and photos of local or historic significance; and digital versions of rare items that aren’t available to the public.
If you want to listen to books
Again, your public library is the best place to start looking for audiobooks. Your borrower’s card may let you access for free resources that you’d have to pay for without that card.
If you can’t get the audio resources you want from your library, you try Audibel.com a subscription site where you can download audio books to listen to on your digital player. Its focus is on current books. Audiobooks.com, another subscription site, has new, used, CDs, MP3 downloads of books for your listening pleasure.
Free downloadable e-books
Project Gutenberg is the first place I look for ebooks. This consortium of organizations is dedicated to preserving and sharing great books in electronic format — and they are all free.
Booksellers let you own for a price
Everybody knows about the big online seller of books and everything else, but Alibris, not Amazon, is my favorite online source for vintage books. It’s a consolidated search site for 8,000 independent booksellers with 60 million used books for sale. You can also buy movies and music.
Between the Covers sells rare books online. It also has what it calls “the Web’s best illustrated guide list to literary awards and book lists.”
Biblio.com is not only a bookseller, but hosts reviews of older books and forums for book-related discussions.
Bookfinder.com and DealOz.com are basically search engines for used books. DealOz also has a browsing section for fiction and literature where you can look for small sub-categories like British historical fiction or prehistoric era fiction.