Frequently asked questions

General questions

What is an ebook?

“eBook” is short for electronic book. An ebook is an electronic format of a book that is designed to be read primarily on a dedicated ereader device like the Nook® or Kindle® or on a tablet computer like an iPad® or Motorola Xoom®.

What’s so great about an ebook?

There are many benefits, but two of the main ones are portability and accessibility. You can literally store thousands of ebooks in one very light ereader. Also, you can set your preferences for font type and size, meaning you can read the book in the way it’s most comfortable for you.

How do I purchase an ebook?

eBooks are now available for purchase directly from these ebook vendors: CSPS Online ShopAmazonBarnes & NobleKobo, and iBooks.

What if I am located outside the United States? Can I still buy the ebook?

Yes, but it depends a bit on which retailer you are purchasing from. While we have granted international rights for all our ebooks to all of our retailers, not all retailers actually sell ebooks internationally. Here is a summary of international support from our retailers:

  • Amazon – Supports international customers. Some Kindle® apps (e.g. Kindle® for Blackberry®) do not support international sales.
  • Barnes and Noble – Nook® and Nook Color® are only available in the US. eBook sales are also US-only.
  • Kobo – Fully supports international customers. Encourages publishers to get and grant international rights.
  • Apple – Fully supports international customers.
What do ebooks look like?

It depends on your ereader. Each vendor you can purchase ebooks from provides a way to preview what the text will look like. You can even download a free preview for your ereader so you can see exactly what the ebook will look like for you.

Can we get the Bible Lesson as an ebook?

Yes, you can. Visit for more information.

Questions about Science and Health as an ebook

How much will it cost?

Retail price for Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures as an ebook is $9.99 on all devices.

How do I know I am buying a version authorized by The First Church of Christ, Scientist?

First, the word “authorized edition” will appear somewhere in the title on the site where you are buying it. Also, the publisher will be listed as the Christian Science Board of Directors. Finally, the Cross and Crown seal will be on the cover and Mary Baker Eddy's trademarked signature will be in the front matter of the ebook.

Why can’t I buy an ebook at my local Christian Science Reading Room?

In order to optimize the reading experience in the way readers expect on these devices, they must be purchased directly from the appropriate vendor. Purchasing a file elsewhere (from a Christian Science Reading Room, for example) and then loading your own files on these devices (called “sideloading”) is not always possible, and when it is, requires technical knowledge and expertise.

However some Christian Science Reading Rooms are featuring ebook products on their websites by joining affiliate or associate programs with the companies that sell our ebooks. Reading Rooms considering this option may want to review affiliate or associate contracts with a lawyer. Here are links to more information regarding some of our retailers’ afilliate programs:

Is this ebook accessible for the visually impaired?

All ereader devices and software allow the reader to increase the font size of the text, so essentially no matter where you buy it the ebook is a large print edition. However, only the Kindle version is accessible for reading aloud. On other devices, the marginal headings and page numbers will be read in the middle of sentences where they occur.

I can’t get it to work (either I can’t download it or I can’t read it).

All technical support questions must be handled by the company that sold you the ereader device — for instance, Amazon for the Kindle® and an Apple store for the iPad®.

eBook Format Questions

Why does the ebook look different from my print book?

In a print book, the designer has complete control over the look and feel of the layout of the book. With ebooks, this is not the case. Most of the control is dictated by the limits of the device.

Where are the line numbers?

eBook text is “reflowable” meaning that the number of words per line changes as the font size or device orientation changes, causing the text to “reflow.” Because of this, there is no way to include the traditional line numbers without interfering with the readability of the text. We were able to incorporate the page numbers into the text so you will always know where you are in relation to the print book.

How do I refer someone to a particular citation without the line numbers?

As you’ll see, in the Kindle® the first full paragraph on each page is preceded by the page number for that paragraph. In all other ereaders, the page numbers are in the right margins. Passages can be cited using page numbers and paragraph numbers (i.e. “on page 4, go to the middle of the fourth full paragraph; that paragraph beings with “Audible prayer…”).

Why are the marginal headings at the top right of each paragraph on the Kindle®?

The constraints of the Kindle® technology preclude any type of embedded treatment for the marginal headings. To connect them with the paragraphs with which they were associated, they were inserted in the top right of each paragraph.

Technical Questions

What is DRM?

DRM stands for "Digital Rights Management" and it is a way of encrypting a file you purchase from an ebook retailer that prevents the ebook from being easily copied or used on a device other than that sold by the retailer. Not all books have DRM. For instance, free public domain ebooks available from Project Gutenberg do not have DRM.

Will Mrs. Eddy’s writings use DRM?

No, none of the ebooks of Mrs. Eddy’s writings published by the Christian Science Board of Directors will employ DRM.

What format are these ebooks in?

The file you purchase from Amazon for your Kindle® is in a proprietary format called Mobipocket with a file extension of “.mobi”. This file is readable only on a Kindle®device or Kindle® software. There is other third-party software that can read mobi files, but they cannot be read on a Nook®, Nook Color®, Kobo, or Sony devices.The file you purchase from any other ebook retailer is in the epub format, an open standard maintained by the International Digital Publishing Forum (IDPF). Because our ebooks are not employing DRM, this ebook file is readable on all ereaders except for the Kindle®.