Getting Library eBooks on the Nook Touch the Easy Way


I’ve been experimenting with different ereading apps on the rooted Nook Touch to find out which ones work the best. Yesterday I went ahead and installed the OverDrive Android app in order to try downloading a free ebook from the library.

Of course you don’t need to have the Nook rooted to read library ebooks on it, you can just add them using the old fashioned method, which requires the use of a computer with Adobe Digital Edition software to transfer the ebooks to the Nook over USB.

But I hate of USB cables. There are too many variations so you have to keep track of which ones go with each different device. I wanted to find an easier way to get library ebooks onto the Nook without using a USB cable or a computer at all. That’s where the OverDrive app comes in. It lets you search and download library ebooks directly from the Nook Touch itself.

The good news is that the OverDrive app works well on the rooted Nook Touch. Once you add a library to the list, it launches the web browser to search for an ebook online, and then you can download it directly to the Nook using the web browser.

But then things get a little tricky. If the ebook has DRM, which most do, then it will ask to authorize the Nook with your Adobe ID, even if you already have done so with the Nook’s built-in reading app. I chose to authorize it with Aldiko 2.0 since it supports Adobe DRM and has more layout options than the OverDrive app.

The library ebook works fine with Aldiko, however, I had intended to read it with the Nook’s regular reading app, but that’s where I hit a snag. There doesn’t seem to be any way to get the Nook to work with a library ebook obtained using the OverDrive app; it will not open them. I tried moving the library ebook to different locations using a file manager, but that didn’t work either.

It looks like the only way to read library ebooks with the built-in Nook app is to use Adobe Digital Editions to transfer them. No big deal, I guess. The Aldiko app works great, and the OverDrive app works well too, it just doesn’t have a lot of features. I’m just glad I was able to find a library ebook to test this with since finding one that’s not checked out has been a problem in the past.

7 Responses to “Getting Library eBooks on the Nook Touch the Easy Way”

  1. Nathan, this is an interesting thing to attempt, but I don’t mind the “side loading” with the USB cable. I’m managing most of my ebooks with Calibre on a networked drive and then send them to a memory card on the e-reader, which could also be done with the Nook. I use multiple memory cards and added a special memory card metadata field to support identifying which memory card the book is stored on. And then I use the generate catalog feature of Calibre to create an epub based catalog which I keep in the main memory of the ereader which contains all the ebooks in my collection as well as which memory card they are on so I can be completely computer free when I read.

    I still find downloading books wireless to be a novelty versus anything that I’m finding practical since most ereaders don’t allow you to direct where the book goes.

  2. The value in using the Overdrive app to get library ebooks is that you’re not limited to getting the books at home.
    Plus, anything that makes a reader more of an independent device and less of a PC Peripheral is a good thing.
    It’s worth remembering that US household PC ownership has pretty much levelled off at just under 80%, which is another way of saying there are more households without PC than households with readers. Any reader that can appeal to that segment of the population (*cough*Kindle*cough*) is going to make significant gains.
    B&N would be well advised to match Overdrive’s direct library access in the stock Nook before Kindle gets library access in the fall.

  3. Awesome, I may have to get a nook. I didn’t know you could ‘side load’ the library books using Adobe Digital Editions

  4. I use Overdrive on my Pandigital. In order for the book to load, I need to authorize it. Problem. I have adobe digital authorized on my laptop and it won’t let me use the same login….so I created a second one….now my laptop tells me that another user exists and won’t let me download to the laptop to transfer to the e-reader. I gave up. Overdrive works great on the e-reader….the format that the book downloads in is awful. The Pandigital does not have a good side-to-side scroll function and sentences run off the page…so you have to scroll back and forth for each sentence. Not so good for speed reading; terrible on the scrolling finger.

    • Authorizing is a pain that I have to deal with all the time because I’m always getting too many authorizations since I test a lot of devices. Last time I used Adobe’s live chat and they were very helpful about getting everything straightened out quickly. Also, you get library ebooks through the OverDrive app and then use them with the Aldiko app instead, which has a ton of layout settings.

  5. Thank you for all the great info on this blog! Do you know if there is any way to sideload an unrooted Nook Touch from an Android tablet (Asus Transformer in my case)? I find that I’m using the tablet most of the time and would like to be able to sideload using the USB port on the docking station. I don’t want to root the Touch because I’ve already had to replace a 3 mos old Touch when the screen stopped responding. I buy Google books through my LBS (or borrow from the library) rather than buy from B&N.

    • I’m not following your question. You can always sideload onto any ereader without rooting… USB all the way. Or you could just use a microSD card since both have one.