I need a dataset of books by title with their respective authors. I have tried the library of congress, but it seems as though you need a subscription to access its data? Are there any other website that would offer a dataset similar to this? I do not need every book, only a large sample.

2 Answers 2


There are lots of options, though Project Gutenberg is probably not one of them because of the time range. You could try using LibraryThing, Google Books (orderBy=newest), Goodreads or Amazon APIs to run search queries. Or try to get access to OCLC WorldCat or Ingram OASIS - talk to your friendly local librarian.

  • WorldCat is the easiest one. Mar 27, 2014 at 11:10
  • As best I can tell, OCLC's licensing terms are for the member organizations ... not outside users ... so you'd have to work with a library that's a member to get access.
    – Joe
    Mar 27, 2014 at 13:36

The Internet Archive's Open Library project offers dumps of their database so you don't have to keep hiting an API like most of the other sites that only allow searching by title/author/isbn.

For more details, see their documentation for developers. The license is effectively CC0 (they waive their rights, but there may be more complex issues)

  • 2
    That's a good one, Joe. I came across it before but forgot to mention. In case you don't want to parse their dumps by hand, this API wrapper could make searching by publication year easier: github.com/reklaklislaw/rest_easy
    – Oleg
    Apr 11, 2014 at 9:23

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.