We are taking drop off donations again!
Please make sure your books fit our guidelines below.
Thank you for supporting prison literacy!
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 liquid stains or other damage. Book 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
- Spiral or comb bound books
- Multi-level sets (encyclopedias, etc.)
- Self-published (unless written for the prison population)
- Missing pages or covers
- Musty smell
- Yellowed, or have brittle spines
- Too old to have a UPC on back cover
- Have writing/notes in the margins (light highlighting is OK)
- Children’s picture books
- 10+ Copies of any one book EXCEPT:
- Spanish-English Dictionaries
- Exercises that can be done without equipment
- Starting a small business
- How to draw
- Trade skills (woodworking, HVAC, electrical, etc)
- Books written specifically for prisoners
Frequently Asked Questions: Donate Books
Yes! Please see our “Donate Books” section for complete info 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 organizations.
No, we do not send magazines (not even National Geographic).
We cannot use every book that is donated even if it meets the criteria in our donation guidelines. Prisoner requests and space dictate what we keep and what we pass on to other organizations.
Books we cannot use are passed onto a local company where they are either sold or recycled in exchange for books we can use.
Sorting through donations is labor and time-intensive. Please send only things you think meet our donation guidelines so that we can focus on connecting prisoners to books!
No. We do not stock prison libraries. To our knowledge, there is no centralized way to distribute books to all prison libraries. Also, we send only books that people request. We welcome donations from authors, but we find that self-published materials rarely match up with requests from people in prison.
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. Without them we would have very few current titles or books in new condition.
We do not offer a pick-up service, except for review copies and books from publishers. As a small nonprofit with limited staff and volunteer time, we do not have the capacity to pick up donations from most donors. You can send books through the mail, but we strongly encourage you to review our donation guidelines before doing so.
Yes, but we recommend that you check our list of other “Books to Prisoners” programs as there might be a similar organization closer to you. Shipping books can be expensive. Donating to another organization may be more effective.
You are also welcome to ship books to us (at your expense), but we strongly encourage you to review our donation guidelines first.
Mail books that meet our donation criteria to the following address. Please do not request a signature. Our hours do not align with typical delivery or post office hours and we may not be able to sign for it.
Prison Book Program
1306 Hancock Street, Suite 100
Quincy, MA 02169.