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4 Android e-reader apps: The latest word in reading

Lee Schlesinger | Feb. 10, 2014
Sometimes even a tablet is too much trouble to tote. These Android smartphone e-reader apps will make it easy to enjoy your favorite book wherever you go.

Under "miscellaneous" you'll find options to autoscroll as you read (with five different scrolling methods), keep a line from the previous page when paging, automatically indent the first line of each paragraph and many more.

If you tap on a word or phrase you can copy it, highlight it, attach a note to it, look it up, search for it within the rest of the document, translate it via Google Translate or look it up on Google or Wikipedia. The app bundles the ColorDict dictionary, but you can choose from half a dozen different dictionary options, including specifying a custom online dictionary.

At a Glance
Developer:
Moon Reader Ltd.
Versions: Free, Pro ($4.99)
Formats supported: ePub, Mobi, PDF (Pro version only), HTML, text, CHM, CBR, CBZ, UMD, others
Languages: 40
Pros:
Interface and gesture settings are highly customizable. Ability to attach notes to words and phrases. Ability to save multiple display themes.
Cons:
Improper handling of blockquote tag in HTML documents

Moon+ also lets you add bookmarks and, as with FBReader, you can view all the bookmarks in one or all of your documents from a single screen and go to any with a tap.

Moon+ Reader Pro, which costs $4.99, adds support for PDF files, text-to-speech and more. It can also integrate with Dropbox or Google Drive, so that if you sync your e-books to those repositories, the app can open them without your having to take the extra step of downloading them to your device.

Bottom line
Moon+ Reader was my favorite of these four apps. I was able to find a typeface I liked better than any in the other apps, and I liked its status bar best. I also appreciated the fact that bringing up settings while reading a book presented icons that let me quickly perform the actions that I would be most likely to take.

Conclusions
Some bibliophiles eschew e-readers because, they say, they like the feel of a book and the act of turning pages. If you're one of these individuals, you may be surprised at how quickly you get used to the convenience of a library in your pocket, the ease of turning pages with a single tap and the small pleasure of never needing a bookmark again.

Of these apps, Moon+ Reader won me over thanks to its sophisticated display options, range of gesture controls and informative status bar. But if your e-reading sensibilities differ from mine, it costs you only a little time to try several apps and find the one that best suits you and your particular needs.

 

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