Welcome to the ePub, Mate

Due to the article posting blunder of last week, everyone will be treated to a free beverage of your choice. So pull up a chair and have yourself a nice pint. If alcohol ain’t your thing, we’ve got plenty of other drinks for ya to enjoy.

Now on to the good stuff. This really isn’t about drinks. This is all about ePub books. The ePub format is an attempt to unify how electronic books are published. Instead of books having multiple formats like .pdf, .lit, .docx, and so on, ePub hopes to do away with all of that confusion and go with one standard format. The ePub format has also been trending toward better accessibility, hence today’s article.

The nice thing about the ePub format is that it can be readable on multiple devices out of the box. This format is easy to read in Windows, Android devices, iDevices such as the iPhone or iPad, and a myriad of other devices too numerous to mention.

Many of my customers are really not sure where they can get ePub books, and if they do find one, they are not sure how to go about reading it. Today we’re going to fix that together.

Where to Get EPub Books

One of the places to get ePub books is Bookshare.org. As of the writing of this article, Bookshare has around 700,000 books in electronic format. If you are not a Bookshare member, you should be.

Another place to get ePub books for free is Project Gutenberg. They have 58,000 free books.

Using the search engine of your choice will give you plenty more options for ePub books.

Opening Your EPub Book

Now that you have the frothy ePub of your choice, it’s time to open and read it. Windows is able to open ePub files, PDF files, and Daisy books automatically without needing to get any extra software. This is done with the Edge browser. To open the ePub book, just press enter on it or double click it. The book will then open in Microsoft Edge.

Reading Your EPub Book

Generally, when you open your book, you’ll be at the cover page or the copyright page. Unless you’re trying to get to sleep, you probably won’t want to read all of the copyright legalese, so to get a list of the book’s contents, just press ALT+T. Visually, the toolbars may disappear after some time. When this happens, you can press any of the keyboard shortcuts to perform the functions, or right click in the book. After pressing ALT+T, you can tab or arrow through the sections of the book.

If you want to find something within the book, you can press CONTROL+F, then just type in a keyword and press enter. You will get a list of all locations in the book where that word appears. Just press enter on any of these to jump to that location in the book.

If you would like to enter notes in the book, you can press ALT+A.

If you want to adjust the visual settings for the book, such as text size, page spacing and so on, press CONTROL+SHIFT+O.

If you would like the book read to you, press CONTROL+SHIFT+G. The text will be visually highlighted as it is read. Once you activate this mode, options will be available that will allow you to change the voice and rate.

When you close the book, your position within the book will be remembered for you. However, if you would like to set your own bookmark, press CONTROL+SHIFT+D. You can bring up a list of all of your bookmarks by pressing ALT+B.

Pressing ALT+F11 will put you in full screen mode for a distraction-free reading experience. For the screen reader people this mode will have little application.

Done with Your Drink?

Well, that about does it for this article. I would like to mention one or two other things before I leave you with your ePub. First, if you’re using a screen reader, sometimes the text does not automatically advance from one section to the next, such as from chapter one to chapter two. This can be irritating, and I’m hoping this will be fixed in the future. A workaround is to use the table of contents feature, ALT+T, to find the next section, and press enter.

,For a visual tour of these features, check out the following video.

And as always… Qapla!

1 thought on “Welcome to the ePub, Mate”

  1. Interesting stuff! I’ve never heard of ePub, but as a writer I ought to know. So I’m definitely gonna check out those sites you shared, grab a tall glass of something cold (probably Mountain Dew lol) and chill with a good book.

    Qatlho’ Qapla’! 🙂

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