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eBook version: good idea, doesn't work
on July 17, 2011
I'm sold on eBooks and do all of my reading-for-pleasure that way, so I was excited to try an important medical text on my Kindle. Unfortunately, it simply didn't work. The chief problem is that it is very difficult to find anything. In a physical book, one can quickly page through to the desired chapter or index entry. Not so with the Harriet Lane in the Kindle. Firstly, the chapter entries in the Table of Contents are not clickable links, so there is no easy way to get to the first page of a chapter, the formulary, or the index. Using the Kindle search to find a topic or drug isn't helpful, because of course, typing in "amoxicillin" or "endocarditis" produces every reference to amoxicillin or endocarditis in the entire book - up to several pages of search results. To make it worse, the first mention of a drug in its formulary entry is as a graphic, not text, so it doesn't show up in a Kindle search.
There is also a glitch in the index. Page numbers after each index entry ARE clickable links, but the links to formulary entries are "misaligned." Clicking on the page number for a drug took me to the wrong formulary page, for the 3-4 drugs I checked.
Clearly, for a textbook to work on an ereader, the whole search method must be reworked. A simple method that displays every time a particular word appears in the book is plainly inadequate. So, just buy the real book.