There are plenty of eBook readers out there for every platform and device you can think of. Linux has a few great ones, but Foliate, a new Linux eReader, is doing things differently. It’s clean, simple, and it incorporates a lot of the powerful features that you’d expect from a top tablet eReader app.
Foliate is only available via source install or Flatpak right now, but it’s open source and sure to make its way into distribution repositories. Even still, it’s easy enough to install on any distribution now using Flapak.
Before you can get Foliate, you’re going to need Flatpak. If you don’t already have it installed on your system, here’s how to get started:
Set Up Flathub
You’ll need the Flathub repository to install the Foliate package. Flathub is the largest and most popular Flatpak repository. Most of the time when you want something through Flatpak, it’s going to come from Flathub.
You can easily add the repository with Flatpak itself and a simple command.
Use Flatpak to install Foliate.
Flatpak will ask you to install dependencies as part of the Foliate install, too.
Foliate’s installed and ready to use. It’s a graphical application designed to integrate well with GTK desktops. If you’re using GNOME, you can simply search for it by name. Other desktop environments will sort Foliate under the Office section of their application menu.
When Foliate first opens, it’s fairly plain. Press the button to open an ebook file in the middle of your screen. Foliate supports a wide range of ebook file types, so whichever files you have, there’s a good chance that they’ll open without an issue.
When Foliate first opens your book, it’ll display it like an open physical book, with two pages visible. You can use the arrow in the lower right of the window to jump to the next page. If you’d prefer to move ahead to a certain point in the book, use the slider to choose a percentage into the book. If your book has a table of contents, you can always use that as well.
Highlight a word or phrase in the book. This will bring up a new menu with ways to handle your text. All the way to the left of the menu you can select a color to highlight your text with. The text will stay highlighted for your reference.
Select the “Note” button next. That will let you create annotations in the ebook as well. You can jump back to those annotations at any time, so this is a great feature for students to easily navigate to important parts of text.
Select the list icon in the upper-left of your screen. That’s the table of contents. When you do, the full list will pop open, letting you pick which chapter you want to read.
Next, find the “A” icon at the top of Foliate. Clicking it reveals your text settings. Here you can modify the appearance of your book. Change the font size, page color, spacing, margins, and whatever else you want to make the text more readable for you.
Feel free to play around with the settings in Foliate to make it your own. This eReader is still fairly young, so expect changes and updates to come from Flatpak. It wouldn’t hurt to keep an eye on your distribution’s repositories, too, because Foliate may arrive any time.