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Better way to navigate reference-content eBooks (ePub)

I find it difficult to navigate in reference books in ePub format (using iBook on the Mac) when I am looking for concepts, not keywords. I have been using the Python and Java Cookbooks and Head First Design Patterns. The only navigations methods besides sequential access are the very long drop-down menu, and the search function.

In printed books I use the ToC frequently to read it sequentially. This is possible because it provides a condensed overview. With the eBooks I found myself googling for questions instead of referring to the Cookbook, which is a pity, as the Cookbook recipes are usually of better quality.

Do you have a recommendation how to navigate the ePub books? Or are better ToCs available?

Best regards,
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