If you know the title or author of the book you could use the search function ( magnifying glass in the top right corner).
While in the library if you long press the page forward or page back buttons on the side it will zip through the pages quickly.
Do the developers read these boards? Does the Nook Simple Touch software get updated often? I didn't see a suggestions board.
No one knows whether or not the developers read the boards. (Or those who do know aren't saying.) The software does not get updated often. (Folks here have been imploring B&N since the NST came out for better shelving and dictionary functionality, for example.)
That said, I love my NST, and, judging by the posts here, most other owners love theirs too.
There used to a suggestion board and an issues reporting board here for each Nook device, but Alex (that's BN_AlexG, the forum administrator) removed access to them several weeks ago, saying that the developers would review them and that the boards would return soon in a different form. No word yet on how that's going.
ETA: See also Alex's recent answer about the return of the issues boards.