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Where can I find low-cost options to rent or buy a textbook?

Before you go shopping, check to see if the CRC Library has a copy of the textbook that you need. Starting in spring 2021, the Library will be lending textbooks at no cost (short and long term loans).

If we don't have what you need, then here are some suggested lower-cost options for textbooks. Before paying full price, explore one of these options:

  • Amazon Textbook Rentals - If you enjoy having a physical copy of the book and you're willing to limit your highlights or markup on the actual text, this can be a very affordable option. A rental textbook means that you rent it for the term and then return it when you're done. Amazon won't guarantee that supplemental material will be included like CDs or access codes to a textbook website. You must be able to put a credit card number on file in order to utilize Amazon's rental service.
  • VitalSource Online Textbooks - You can choose to rent the ebook or purchase lifetime access. Both options are substantially lower in price than a new copy of the physical book. This is a good option only if you're willing to access the book on a device. You aren't able to download or print pages, but the interface does have built-in tools that allow you to highlight, bookmark pages, and more.
  • RedShelf Online Textbooks - You can choose to rent the ebook or purchase lifetime access. Both options are substantially lower in price than a new copy of the physical book. This is a good option only if you're willing to access the book on a device. You are usually only able to download or print small portions of a book (example: 10%), but the interface does have built-in tools that allow you to highlight, bookmark pages, and more.
  • Los Rios Community College District Bookstore - The college bookstore has transitioned to a new vendor that serves all colleges in the district. Both print and ebook options are available through the bookstore website, but students may be able to find better pricing through the other options listed above.