Donate Books

Prison restrictions and prisoner requests determine which books are sent to prisoners and which are not. This table summarizes our needs. Please email if you have any questions.

Books we cannot use are passed onto Better World Books or Big Hearted Books. These organizations either sell them on our behalf, pass them onto other organizations that can use them or recycle them if they are unusable.

Books we CAN USE are...
Books we CANNOT USE are...
General GuidelinesPaperback
Gently-used, like new or brand-new condition
Self published books written for the prison population are OK
Advance reading and review copies are OK
Spiral or comb bound
Multi-level sets - encyclopedias, etc
Missing pages or cover
Smell musty
Missing pages or covers
Self-published (unless written for the prison population)
Too old to have a UPC on back cover
Have writing/notes in the margins (light highlighting is OK)
Children's picture books
FictionRecent best-sellers
Action/Adventure (Dean Koontz, etc)
Classic Literature (Moby Dick, etc)
Ethnic (Af-Am, Native-Am, Hispanic)
Historic Fiction
Manga/graphic novels
Myths & Legends
Science Fiction & Fantasy
Urban Fiction
College literature compilations
Depict weapons on the cover
Romance novels
Titles that not in one of the categories to the left
(even loosely)
Non-FictionWe can use most paperback non-fiction, especially...
Art, especially drawing
Computer science - popular programming languages published in the last 6 years
Cultural – African American, Hispanic, Native American
Exercise (esp weight lifting and yoga)
Foreign language study and books in Spanish
Games (Sudoku, puzzles, chess, etc)
Gay/lesbian/bisexual/transgender studies
Health - General
History & current events
Legal dictionaries and basic criminal law
Psychology & self help
Secret societies and the occult (e.g., Masons, Rosicrucian Order, extra terrestrials, etc.)
Small business startup
Social Sciences (archaeology, anthropology, philosophy, activism, political science)
Spirituality & Religion – especially Bible concordances & dictionaries, Islam and non-mainstream religions such as Wicca, Paganism etc, New Age spirituality
The Autobiography of Malcolm X and works about or by MLK & Barack Obama
Trades (i.e. woodworking, automotive, etc.)
Travel essays and travelogues
Academic journals
Computer science more than 6 years old
Legal journals and attorney-level legal reference
Textbooks more than 10 years old
Travel guides (essays and travelogues OK)
Written specifically for women
ReferenceDictionaries (English)
Almanacs less than 10 years old
Single volume encyclopedias
Foreign language dictionaries
GED study guides
Spanish/English dictionaries and books in Spanish
Writing reference - grammar guides, etc.
Encyclopedias and similar hard-cover book sets
Legal Journals
GRE and grad-school level test prep books