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Research Guides

E-Book Collections: Tips for Downloading eBooks

Information on finding and using e-books at the UW Libraries


  • EPUB formats are compatible with most reader software (Kindle, Bluefire Reader, Apple Books for iPhone/iPad).
  • EPUB formats allow for changes in display options (bigger text, different font, etc).
  • PDF formats maintain a static structure of the document, and do not allow for changes in text display options.


Things to Note

  • Not every book from the UW Libraries is available in an electronic format; to find eBooks, please visit an eBook dedicated collection, or use the instructions to filter search results to only see eBooks.
  • Check-out periods for materials can vary.
  • All eBooks may be viewed and read online in your browser, but not all are available for offline reading/downloading.
  • Many eBooks can be downloaded or printed, but you should check the rules on each item to determine the limitations of these features.
  • Some items will require Adobe Digital Editions (for laptops and desktops) or Bluefire Reader (for mobile devices) in order to download books.


Open Access Options

Materials accompanied by this symbol can be viewed by anyone, regardless of UW affiliation.

To read more about open access and what it means, visit the UW Guide "Introduction to Open Access"


Adobe Digital Editions and Bluefire Reader are software that you may need to read some eBooks from UW. Adobe Digital Editions works best for desktop, and Bluefire Reader is better for mobile devices.

Both Adobe Digital Editions and Bluefire Reader uses Adobe ID to sign in.