Nook, an E-Reader

I have a Nook.

Standard Nook picture from the website.

My Nook with the Cityscape screensaver activated.  The touchscreen is behind my hand (sorry for the bad pic).

I refuse to call it a “Nook E-book Reader” (say it out loud fast for the effect).

It’s a great device.  It has a nice, large e-ink screen with a touch screen below it for navigating around the menus.

I’ll do a rundown of my likes and dislikes like I do with most of my other reviews…


  • Dead simple to work with. The navigation is easy, the touchscreen just works (sometimes a hair slowly) and it’s a beautiful piece of tech.
  • Additional storage via SD card behind the back panel.  I can’t stress how awesome this is.  It basically allows for unlimited storage of ebooks, PDFs and music.
  • Speaking of music, the Nook has a built-in music player.  I haven’t tested it; I have a 8gb Walkman that I prefer to use for music.
  • The B&N store.  There are a ton of books to choose from.  I like browsing around.  I’ve only bought one book (The Chicago Way by Michael Harvey).  Granted, I use “bought” very loosely, as it was only $1.99.
  • The e-ink screen is super clear.  It’s really a joy to read stuff on this device; much easier than my laptop or netbook.  My eyes don’t get tired reading on this like they can on a computer.
  • It runs on the Android platform.  This means that it’s hackable.
  • The ability to side-load books.  I’ve been getting classics that I’ve been meaning to read forever and just haven’t.  Project Gutenberg, Manybooks, Baen Scifi and fantasy books, The Burgomeister’s Books, Fictionwise, and ePub Books are available in non-DRM ePUB/PDB format.  Many of the books available are also in Google’s repository of free, out-of-copyright books.  There will be overlap on all of these sites; browse around and see what you find.
  • Linux compatability.  It’s all drag n drop and stuff shows up right away.  It is awesome.
  • Free Fridays! Free ebooks on Fridays.  Mostly romance, but I’ve found a couple decent books this way.


  • DRM.  The B&N store has mostly DRMed books.  I can see why, but I’d rather have a non-DRMed version.
  • The e-ink screen is a little slow, especially catching up to the touchscreen.  This is fine; e-ink is an awesome tech and so easy to read, I’ll deal with the slower refresh.
  • No inexpensive cases/covers available yet.  I didn’t see any in my local store, and there were none under $20 in the B&N online store.  I’d rather purchase from a brick and mortar store.  We have to support the actual shops that carry the merchandise.
  • A hair on the heavy side, but it’s much better than holding onto a huge hardcover book that can be very heavy.
  • Like any new tech toy, the buttons are stiff for the first few days. They’ve loosened up after a week of use.
  • No ability to add RSS feeds.  When you boot your Nook up, you’ll have a choice to go to “The Daily” and get the blogs that B&N provides.  I’d love to put blogs of my choice in there.  I’d probably add some of my techy full-article feeds to the nook.  I do like getting away from the computer every once in a while.

The Nook has some issues that may be taken care of with new releases of the software, mainly the e-ink speed and the adding of RSS feeds.  The button issue has taken care of itself, as has the cover issue.  My mother made me a very nice pouch for my Nook that protects the screen.  I can put it in my purse without worrying that my screen will get scratched.

This is a great product that can be improved with software updates.  I’m running the 1.2 version of the software, and it’s very robust right now.  I’d really like to see RSS feeds supported soon.

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11 thoughts on “Nook, an E-Reader”

  1. Thanks for the review! I’ve started reading books again recently (after a couple years of not) and the Nook has been lurking near the top of my want list these past few weeks.

    1. The Nook is a great piece of tech. It does run Android, so if you want to hack it, that’s an option.

      Did I mention that you can side-load magazines? If you download magazines (I’m getting BSD Mag and Full Circle), you can add them to “My Documents” on the Nook. Something to think about. It can do this because it has native support for PDFs.


    1. Yes, I understand that.

      I linked to Baen in the bit about side-loading books. The purchase books are free of DRM? If so, that’s very nice.


  2. I’m jealous of you at the moment, Amy :D I’ve been wanting to get my hands on one of these beauties but ebook readers are not quite there yet for me. Since many models can connect to net, I really, really want be able to read my RSS feeds and have access to website at least to look up something (heh iPad with e-ink :P) The reader that really catches my eye is BeBook’s Neo :

    which is expensive. But either that or I’ll need a netbook to take with me to work.

    1. That looks like a really neat ereader.

      I’d love the RSS ability. I think B&N might add that functionality in a later version of the software. It’s been asked for in the forums; we’ll see if B&N pays attention to those requests.


  3. This says “welcome back edythemighty” though to my knowledge I haven’t commented here. Are you tracking me, woman?!

    Oh…it’s probably Never mind

    Oh yeah, cool-ass device you got there. I’ve wanted to get one, delayed due to lack of funds, and thus have decided to put it off til there’s a newer version, or a better competing device. Thy post is appreciated and well read all the same.

    1. Yes, I track everyone… *shifty eyes* *mutters government mutters*


      It’s a great device. I’m sure it’ll be upgraded within a year and have color and all sorts of things. Anyway, if you have the extra cash, and are looking for a device that lets you read books and read them easily (and play music/audiobooks) then it’s really awesome.


  4. I purchased myself a Nook just the other day after reading this post about it and looking at one in the store. I have to say that I like it a lot and think that I will get a lot of use out of it.

    I do want to update everyone about a new update that ran through for the Nook, apparently just the day before I purchased mine. The new update looks like B&N are trying to keep things going. They added a few features like a web browser and; I think one of my favorites; the ability to download free books from Google books. I think that they are drm free as well. I do hope that they will update “The Daily” page and let users change the items on it in the future.

    Thanks for the review. It helped a lot.

    1. Wow, I never knew anyone would use my blog to actually buy something. :)

      I ran the update to my Nook the other day, and it makes the device more than an ereader.

      Yes, Google Books are DRM-free.

      I also hope that they will update the Daily and allow us to add our own RSS feeds.

      Thank you for the kind works and I’m glad you enjoyed my review!


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