eBooks Frequently Asked Questions

Welcome to our eBooks FAQ section. Here you'll find answers to the most frequently asked questions regarding all areas of EPUB eBooks.

Please note: this information refers to EPUB eBooks, sold on Waterstones.com. For infomation on Kindle, please click here

What do I need to read eBooks from Waterstones.com?

You can read our eBooks on most eReaders, except for Kindle devices. You can also read them on a PC, Mac and most smartphones and tablets, including iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, Android and Windows Phone.

Reading on an eReader, PC or Mac

  1. Before you download your first eBook, please create an 'Adobe ID'. This ID, (usually your email address), acts as your unique key to be able to open the eBooks that you buy.
  2. Download and install Adobe Digital Editions on your computer.
  3. During the simple set-up process, please select the 'Authorise my computer' option and enter your Adobe ID.
  4. If you have an eReader, connect it to your computer and turn it on; you will be able to use Adobe Digital Editions to transfer eBooks onto your eReader.

Reading on a smartphone or tablet

  1. Download and install a free app, called ‘OverDrive'.
  2. On the first occasion you open the app, you will be prompted to create a free 'OverDrive account'. Please note that this is different to your Waterstones account.
  3. From this point, simply press 'Download' when you’ve made an eBook purchase from Waterstones.com using your device, and your chosen title will open automatically within the app.
  4. Alternatively, to access your previous purchases, sign-in to your account on Waterstones.com, then click 'Digital Order History' to see your eBooks. Please note at present this area is only available on the full Waterstones.com site. If you are using the mobile version of the website on your device, please scroll down to the bottom of the homepage and press 'Visit Waterstones.com full site'.

If you require assistance with any of these steps, please contact our support team.

Why do I need an Adobe ID?

At the request of the publishers whose eBooks are sold on Waterstones.com, all of our eBooks are in the EPUB format secured with Adobe ADEPT Digital Rights Management, or 'DRM'. DRM is used to limit the ability to copy eBooks and ties your purchased eBooks to the Adobe ID you are using.

It is possible to use your account across up to six different devices authorised to the account including eReaders, smartphones, tablets, laptops and desktops. Your Adobe ID is the key to all of this though, as it identifies you as the person permitted to open and read the eBooks you've purchased.

I've forgotten my Adobe ID or password

Your Adobe ID will be the email address that you registered with Adobe. To reset your password, please request a new password from Adobe.com.

We would strongly advise you to avoid creating a second Adobe ID, as this will cause problems with opening your previously purchased eBooks which will have been registered to your previous account. It is always preferable to reset your exisiting account rather than creating a new one.

Can I read eBooks from Waterstones.com on a Kindle?

Due to differences in eBook formats and DRM, the eBooks currently sold on Waterstones.com (ePUB eBooks) are not compatible with the Kindle. However, you can use the ‘OverDrive Media Console’ app on the Kindle Fire, if you wish to read ePUB eBooks on this device.

Why are the prices of eBooks so varied?

The RRP of each eBook is set by the publisher, but as a general rule they should be around the same price or cheaper than the print edition. However, unlike hardback and paperback books, eBooks are subject to UK VAT, which adds 20% to the price.

We are making every effort to offer our customers good value on all eBooks, therefore you will often find reductions from the RRP on our site.

Does Waterstones.com sell eBooks to customers outside of the UK?

We regret that at present we are only selling eBooks within the UK. For further information, please see our Waterstones eBook territorial restrictions.

Can I give an eBook as a gift?

At present, we don't offer the option of giving an eBook as a gift. However, you can instead give a Waterstones gift card. You can purchase Waterstones gift cards online or from all of our shops, which can then be used by the recipient to purchase eBooks from Waterstones.com.

Can I submit my eBook to Waterstones.com?

For information on submitting eBooks to Waterstones.com, please see our submitting eBooks guidelines.

Need more help?

My computer isn't recognising my eReader

Please try plugging the device into a different USB port on your computer. If this doesn't solve the problem, please contact our support team.

Where can I get more help with Adobe Digital Editions?

For more help with Adobe Digital Editions please visit the Adobe Digital Editions help pages on Adobe.com.

Where has my download been saved?

Your download will have been saved on your computer's hard drive. The location will depend on your operating system:

On a Windows computer, check in the folder '...\My Documents\My Digital Editions'.
For Mac users, look in '...\Documents\My Digital Editions'.
For Android smartphone/tablet users, you will first need to install the OverDrive Media Console app. If you take this step first, your eBooks will be opened automatically when you download them from Waterstones.com. However, should this not happen, look in '.../storage/emulated/0/Download'.
For iPhone/iPad users, you will first need to install the OverDrive Media Console app. If you take this step first, your eBooks will be opened automatically when you download them from Waterstones.com. iPhones and iPads won't let you download your eBooks before you've installed this app.

My eBook is incomplete/wrong.

If you have successfully downloaded an eBook, but you feel the content is incorrect please contact our customer services.

Please try to provide as much detail as possible about the nature of the problem, including the eBook title and author, as well as your order number, so that we can feed back the problem to the publisher to rectify your order as quickly as possible.

What should I do if an eBook does not completely download, or I receive an error message?

If you are unsuccessful in downloading your eBook, contact us for assistance.

Please provide your order number and date of purchase as well as the title of the book.