We are taking drop off donations again!
Please make sure your books fit our guidelines below and visit us during volunteer hours. Books can be donated during any session listed on our volunteer session schedule.
Thank you for supporting readers in prison!
Many requests go unfulfilled because we don’t have the right books.
Purchase a book requested by a person in prison and have it automatically shipped to us!
Support local businesses through our online wishlists at local bookstores: Wellesley Books and Porter Square Books.
Purchase a book online or check our in-store display for most needed books!
If you live outside of the Boston area, you can mail your books to us at 1306 Hancock Street, Suite 100, Quincy, MA 02169. Use Media Mail to save money.
You can also donate books to another “books to prisoners” group near you.
Please be sure all donated books meet the below guidelines prior to donating.
Books We Need
Books must be paperback and in good condition with no water/liquid damage, limited or no highlighting/underlining, an intact spine and covers, and free of stains, mildew, etc. Content should be up to date.
PBP will accept:
- Self-published books written for people in prison
- Advance reading and review copies
Books We Cannot Accept
- Hardcovers, except in our highest-demand categories (see Top Requests)
- Spiral or comb bound books
- Sets of encyclopedias
- Poor condition paperbacks, including any water/liquid damage, missing pages or covers, musty smell, broken spines, extensive highlighting/underlining
- Too old to have a UPC on back cover
- 10+ copies of any one book except in our highest-demand categories
- Any book promoting conspiracy theories or disseminating disinformation
Frequently Asked Questions: Donate Books
Yes! Please read this page carefully for complete information on books we can and cannot use. We have limited storage space and strongly encourage donors to donate books that are not a good fit to other groups such as your local public library’s Friends group, your local thrift store (Goodwill, etc.), or More Than Words.
No. Most prisons require the incarcerated person to be the named subscriber on the magazine, and others will only accept the current edition of a magazine.
Storage space and level of popularity among our readers dictate what we keep and what we pass on to other organizations.
Books we cannot use are passed onto other used book dealers, thrift stores, or charities, where can often be traded for books we can use.
No. We do not supply prison libraries, only individual readers. We do, however, welcome donations from authors if your book is in a frequently requested category (see Top Requests above)
Yes! Because many prisons require new books and because most donated books tend to be at least a few years old, non-fiction review copies and ARC’s are very useful to us.
No. We have a very small staff and currently do not have the capacity to pick up donations. You can send books through the mail, but we strongly encourage you to review the donation guidelines above before doing so.
Yes, you are welcome to ship books to us at your expense. Use Media Mail to save money, and please do not send a shipment that requires a signature.
Prison Book Program
1306 Hancock Street, Suite 100
Quincy, MA 02169
Please also browse our list of other books to prisons programs nationwide. There may be another group close to you!