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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
With the new Touch kindle, and the Fire, showing covers, a lot of people have been asking about how to change the cover of their Amazon DRM-ed ebooks so that better covers show up on these devices (or even on the old kindles, when you say go to-> Cover). Here are the steps - and it does not break the DRM on the book.

These steps can be used to change the cover, title (for instance if you want to add a number for books in a series), author (for instance if it isn't sorting right), and adds page numbers.

1. Start Calibre, connect kindle, click on kindle icon (labeled "device") at the top of Calibre to see books on your kindle.
2. Find the book you want, and if it doesn't have a green checkmark next to it (meaning it is not stored on your computer, in your Calibre library), right-click on it and say "add books to library".
3. click on the "library" icon at the top. Find the book in the list.
3.5. Read the bit below about page numbers, if you care about page numbers, before doing step 4 below.
4. Right-click on the book, go to "remove books" -> "remove matching books from device". This step is important so that you can then have Calibre put the book back on your device - with the new cover & metadata.
5. Right-click on the book and edit the metadata, including changing the cover if need be.
6. Right-click on the book and say "send to device".

You should see the book with the new cover & metadata. I don't know how this works, exactly. The book file still has DRM afterwards (the one I tried wouldn't open on my Kindle for PC, and Calibre wouldn't convert it to ePub), and yet somehow it was changed.

One Pro AND Con - page numbers. When you use Calibre to send a book to your kindle, it will add a page number file. It is only an estimate and will not be as accurate as the page number files that your kindle downloads from Amazon. So if your book did have page numbers (before you did all these steps), and you want that accuracy, then you might want to save this page number (apnx) file on your desktop while you are editing the metadata in Calibre (because when you delete the book in step 4 above, the apnx file will be deleted). Then, after you have Calibre send the book file back to your kindle, you can manually replace Calibre's apnx file with the one you got from Amazon. But again, this is only necessary if you really care about the page numbers being very accurate to the paper version.

And I say it's also a "Pro" because if your book did not have page numbers, then the steps above will add page numbers (though not overly accurate ones).
 

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Will this mess up the Whispersync capabilities? I want to be able to sync farthest page read as well as highlights and book notes. If this calibre modification causes Whispersync to treat this DRMed book like it was sideloaded, then only the farthest page read will sync. Have you experimented with the sync yet to see if it still works?
 

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I will see how it works out when I get my new Kindle today!

Now my biggest headache has been sorting Louise Penny's "Still Life."  It's the first book in a series and I like having my books listed on my Kindle from first to most recent.  I do this by changing the publication dates in metadata.  Problem is this one book just will not sort correctly!  The rest of the series - and all the other books - sort correctly, but this one title just keeps going in the middle of the list.  I've even changed centuries (!) and it still won't sort properly.  Any ideas?  Anybody else have this book and is having similar issues?  ???
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
DYB said:
I will see how it works out when I get my new Kindle today!

Now my biggest headache has been sorting Louise Penny's "Still Life." It's the first book in a series and I like having my books listed on my Kindle from first to most recent. I do this by changing the publication dates in metadata. Problem is this one book just will not sort correctly! The rest of the series - and all the other books - sort correctly, but this one title just keeps going in the middle of the list. I've even changed centuries (!) and it still won't sort properly. Any ideas? Anybody else have this book and is having similar issues? ???
You could use Calibre to rename the books in that series to start with a number, such as "1 - Still Life".

I'm surprised but pleased to report that syncing seems to work just fine. I thought there might be a problem because Calibre changes the book filename... but it synched to my kindle for PC just fine...
 

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DYB said:
I will see how it works out when I get my new Kindle today!

Now my biggest headache has been sorting Louise Penny's "Still Life." It's the first book in a series and I like having my books listed on my Kindle from first to most recent. I do this by changing the publication dates in metadata. Problem is this one book just will not sort correctly! The rest of the series - and all the other books - sort correctly, but this one title just keeps going in the middle of the list. I've even changed centuries (!) and it still won't sort properly. Any ideas? Anybody else have this book and is having similar issues? ???
Is it a Topaz formatted book? I have one that just won't sort no matter what I do and it drives me crazy. Make sure the author names are exact. You might have a space or something after the name. Just bulk edit the author name on the whole series.
 

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Luvmy4brats said:
Is it a Topaz formatted book? I have one that just won't sort no matter what I do and it drives me crazy. Make sure the author names are exact. You might have a space or something after the name. Just bulk edit the author name on the whole series.
I've quantuple-checked spellings of everything. But I do believe that book is in topaz format! Maybe that's exactly what the problem is!
 

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Eltanin Publishing said:
I'm surprised but pleased to report that syncing seems to work just fine. I thought there might be a problem because Calibre changes the book filename... but it synched to my kindle for PC just fine...
Syncing doesn't use the file name, it uses the ASIN number, which doesn't change.

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
jmiked said:
Syncing doesn't use the file name, it uses the ASIN number, which doesn't change.

Mike
That makes sense, though the ASIN is in the filename when you download it, so I thought maybe that was needed. It's great that Amazon didn't rely upon the filename - I can imagine some people changing book filenames when they backup their books to their computer. Oh, and now that I think about it, I think the filename is different when you download from Amazon to PC for sideloading, vs. when you download directly to the kindle. So yeah - filename must not be important.
 

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Eltanin Publishing said:
You should see the book with the new cover & metadata.
If you can see covers you added then there must be a step you didn't mention. I have edited metadata and covers in Calibre for more than 800 books (following same the procedure you outlined) and none of the books are shown with the new covers when I transfer to my Kindle. The other changes are there, but not the covers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
SheilaLouise said:
If you can see covers you added then there must be a step you didn't mention. I have edited metadata and covers in Calibre for more than 800 books (following same the procedure you outlined) and none of the books are shown with the new covers when I transfer to my Kindle. The other changes are there, but not the covers.
It's working for me, and I was very exact with the steps. Are you sure you deleted the book from your kindle, after you transferred it to your Calibre library? If not, it won't work. If you transfer it to your library, make changes, then send it to kindle, it won't work if you don't delete the book off your kindle before sending the changed version to your kindle.

Here's the original image from Visit from the Goon Squad, as downloaded from Amazon (these are screen shots from my kindle):



and here's the one I changed. I drew on it in Photoshop to be sure it was the one that I changed it to.



These are both what I got when I went to menu -> Go To -> cover.

BTW, this might be less of an issue with the new kindle as it may seem. This book, for instance, shows the correct cover in Kindle for PC (without me changing it). When I open the book in Kindle for PC, I get what I get on the kindle - the boring cover. But the nice one shows on the library screen of Kindle for PC. So there is a difference between what it shows on the Kindle for PC home screen, vs. what cover is actually embedded in the book file. So maybe all our books will have nice covers automatically on the Touch home screen. But it's still good to know how to change the cover that is embedded in the book.
 

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Thanks, EP, it's working for me on my K1.  I followed the steps exactly.  And the file is still DRM'd.  I'm glad to be able to do this, though I seldom look at covers!

Betsy
 

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Eltanin Publishing said:
Are you sure you deleted the book from your kindle, after you transferred it to your Calibre library? If not, it won't work.
Yes, I delete.

I've discovered the problem. I don't have the current version of Calibre. No doubt everything will work for me after I upgrade.
 
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