How to Add a Book Cover to Ebooks in Calibre

“I’d like my e-books to have different vibrant book covers in my e-library.” This was my dilemma when I started downloading digital books from Amazon, iBookstore and third-party websites. Though I still buy printed versions, practically speaking, digital content is cheaper and less spacious (literally!).

If you’re an avid reader just like me and would like to update your e-books with beautiful book covers, whether they are in PDF, EPUB, or MOBI formats, here’s a step-by-step guide to add a book cover in Calibre.

Calibre is free open-source e-books management software, which is compatible with Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux. It’s quite a bit overwhelming for first-time users to navigate it with all the buttons, options and menu tabs, but once you get used to it, it’ll make your e-books management easier.

Assuming it’s your first time using Calibre, head to the official website and download the software for your OS. It is available for Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux

Calibre-download

1. Drag the cursor to the “Add Books” button on the upper left side of the menu bar. 

Calibre-addbooks

2. Choose the e-book you would like to edit or add a new book cover to. 

Calibre-choosebook

Note: You may search via Google and other search engines to check the different book cover designs – the ideal size is 300×400. Take note that these images are subjected to copyright.

3. The e-book that you selected is shown in the library. (e.g. “Letters to a Young Poet” – it’s really a great book for writers). On the right side, you’ll see the information about the e-book such as Authors, Formats, and Path (of the file). Right click the e-book and select “Edit metadata –> Download metadata and covers” 

Calibre-addbookcover

4. You will see this pop-up box below; select “Download only covers.” 

Calibre-addcoverdownload

5. Another pop-up box tells you the download is complete. Click “Yes” to update the library; you’ll see the book cover. 

Calibre-addbookdownloadyes

However, there might be an instance when Calibre can’t find a cover. Try it again for the second time, but if the library doesn’t show a cover or you prefer a different cover design, you may upload one from your drive manually.

Assuming you have downloaded your desired book cover design, here are the next steps:

1. Right click the e-book in the library and select “Edit metadata -> Edit metadata individually.”

2. Once you see the pop-up box on your screen, click “Browse.”

3. After choosing the desired image, simply click “OK” 

Calibre-addbookcovermanually

Don’t forget this last step to make sure the cover is included in the e-book: CONVERT. The changes will take effect when you convert your e-book.

Click the “Convert books” button; you can select the same output format (e.g. EPUB) or convert it to another. Then click “OK.” 

Calibre-addbookcovermanually

This is just one of Calibre’s features to help you manage your e-books. For now, enjoy your collections and feel free to share this post with your friends who love e-books.