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How to Read EPub Books on your Kindle

Amazon’s Kindle is probably the most popular ereader out there, but it doesn’t support the EPub format. Here’s how to convert your collection of books in the EPub format, maybe from Google Books, eBooks.com, AbeBooks, or another online collection, so that you can read those EPub files on your Kindle.
They will appear on your book menu and can be read just like any other Kindle ebook.
read epubs on your kindle

Yes, you can read an ePub book on your Amazon Kindle, but not in EPub format, you must convert it first. The Kindle definitely has the clearest screen and is currently the closest to actually reading a book. If you haven’t already got one, it’s worth getting a Kindle and converting the EPUB book files.

 

 

How to read EPub books on your Kindle

Can the Kindle read EPubs? Well, technically no, you have to convert the EPub file to a format that Kindle does recognize (MOBI) first. There’s a few software packages out there to do this, but I’ve found Calibre to be the most simple way.

 

To Start – Download Calibre

ePub book management software

Calibre is an ebook management software program. Install it on your computer where you want to connect your Kindle. Calibre works with Windows, Mac, and Linux. I ran in on Windows 7 without any problems. It will automatically recognize your Kindle when you plug it in and will handle the necessary conversion when you add a EPub to your Kindle.
[Calibre also converts PDFs, find out how at: How to read PDF's on your Kindle]

Installing Calibre is as simple as downloading it and running the setup program, accepting the license, and then clicking install.

The last setup screen, shown below, offers you the option to run Calibre right away. Leave it checked and Calibre will start up.

calibre read epubs on kindle screen shot

There is no real need to configure anything further. Click Add Books to add your EPub books to the Calibre management system. Browse to the folder where the books are located and select the books you want, then add them.

Calibre read epub on kindle

Now connect your Kindle device. Once it is recognized you will see a new icon at the top of Calibre called Send to Device. Click to highlight the EPub books you wish to send to your Kindle and click this button.

Calibre read epub on kindle

You will be prompted to Auto-convert the file(s), just click Yes.

Convert your epub files for Kindle

You will notice in the bottom-right corner of Calibre it will tell you the status of the jobs being performed. When the number is back to zero you can disconnect your Kindle.

Calibre epub converting to Kindle

You’re done!

It really is that easy and now you can read EPub books on your Kindle. These books will be backed up as the Kindle is backed up.

 

Kindle Accessories

Shop Amazon's Kindle Accessories Store

 

Search for other Kindle Books from Amazon

Here’s quick links to today’s Book Best Sellers and Kindle Best Sellers .
Use the box below to search for other eBooks to read on your Kindle. Type the title, author, or subject in the search box below or click any book and go from there.

 

Other Places for Epub Books

Look for EPub books at: Google Books, eBooks.com, and Mobile Read

For the month of October 2012 eBooks has a 20% discount in the following categories: Drama, Mathematics, Pets, Religion, Technology. Use the code Categorysalescp

Don’t exclude EPub’s just because they aren’t a Kindle standard. Read EPub books on your Kindle as you would any other format. Enjoy reading!

 

ATTENTION – Do Not Use Hamster Free eBook Converter

If you have been searching for eBook converters you may have come across HamsterSoft which has a product called Hamster Free eBook Converter (HFEC). This product illegally uses the Calibre conversion engine as part of their product and should not be downloaded or used!

 

Don’t have a Kindle?

Here are the models that are currently available from Amazon:

We personally went with the Kindle Keyboard (this was before the Touch came out) since we couldn’t think of a good reason we’d need to download books while out.

 

What is the Epub format?

EPub is a free and open e-book standard. Here’s an interesting fact you may not know; EPub files are very much like web pages and can actually be edited with a web page editor. Here’s the full details from Wikipedia if you’re interested.

 

 

Why EPub?

If you don’t have an existing EPub book collection is there any reason to think about EPubs? There might be.
As a free open source format it will be used by many independent publishers that won’t be on the Amazon site. Google Books has quite a few available EPUB books. Depending on where you source your books you may find cheaper or free books in the EPub format that you want to add to your collection. Also, if you happen to be using different eReaders throughout your home or business then EPub is a publishing standard.
10% off New York Times Best Sellers at eBooks.com

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141 Comments  comments 

141 Responses

  1. Mic G

    I never comment on these things, but THANK YOU SO MUCH!! YOU JUST MADE MY ENTIRE YEAR!! I was so bummed about not being able to read EPUBs on my kindle… THANK YOU!!

  2. Kimberly

    Exactly what I needed! Thank you so much for this post. I had someone give me an Epub book and didn’t have a clue how/if I could read it on my Kindle. Calibre worked perfectly.

  3. Sara

    Thank you so much for this post. I had several epub books that I purchased pre-Kindle and was going crazy trying to figure out how to get them on there. This was really easy.

  4. KN

    I followed the directions but got messages that all of the books I was trying to move over to my Kindle Fire were DRM protected. Any way I can read Nook books on my Kindle Fire?

    • KN – Calibre does not look at or strip off DRM. Make sure it’s legally okay to do what you would like to do, and if it is then seek out software that will remove DRM.

      • Agustin

        it is legally ok my ebook supplier tells me (librocity-Argentina), can you suggest a software for drm stripping I have a Mac with Lion and want to send to a Keyboard kindle

        Thanks

  5. CJ

    I downloaded Calibre, converted a few books, and connected my Kindle Touch. It recognized the Kindle, so I clicked send to device. It says it sent, but I can’t find the book on my Kindle. What am I doing wrong?

  6. jan

    I find conversion fairly simple: Kindle ePub, but I really wonder why Amazon didn’t implement it itself – or just went with the ePub-Format as the standard for the kindle.

    • Rexx

      Amazon is using their proprietary format because if they were using an open one you would be able to read books you’ve bought elsewhere (= not Amazon’s shop) on your Kindle. And they definitely don’t want to grant you that freedom: it’s calle “vendor lock-in”.

  7. Sorry, but I always create Epub using this Epub creator, just simply a click would save your much work on calibre.
    Hope I make some point here:)

  8. Kaye

    Is this legal? I read somewhere that converting was illegal.

  9. Dgold

    I have installed calibre, but it doesn’t recognize the Kindle!! Help!!

    • Blablah

      Dude, just right click on the book you’ve converted, hit “Open Containing Folder” and then copy paste it onto the documents folder on your kindle.

  10. Thank you so much for this post!

    I self-published a book with Lulu.com in 2008 in order to meet a launch deadline. Last year Lulu performed complimentary epub conversions on the work of all pre-existing authors who did not actively opt out, in order to take maximum advantage of the e-reader explosion. I was anxious to check out my new epub before putting it on sale, but did not have an e-reader. This situation became an emergency when I discovered that, unbeknown to me, those good people at Lulu had put my epub on sale in the States through Barnes and Noble! (I am in the UK.)

    So I bought a Kindle for Christmas for my 12-year-old daughter, who had started to devour teen chick lit, with intent to borrow it to check out my epub file. I was gobsmacked when I discovered that the Kindle could not read the file! But with the help of Calibre and your instructions I was able to do the job.

    I have now put a link to this post on the website which I use to market my book.

  11. TithJelfchile

    Hi, I’m new on this forum and I want to say hello. I read a lot of time but today I want to say this is very good site.

  12. Will

    Brilliant – thanks. Just created a doc in InDesign, exported to epub, then converted with Calibre – great result.

  13. Nichola Hudson

    Great program, did what it said on the tin! Thanks so much!

  14. [...] http://techsupport.foreverwarm.com/how-to-read-epub-books-on-your-kindle Rate this: Like this:LikeBe the first to like this post. This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. ← 8 April, 2012 07:35 [...]

  15. Hyun

    I found this article very useful as I was thinking to read my iTunes ebooks with Kindle device. Thanks a lot!

  16. JustRosy

    How do you do this for Kindle for PC?

  17. C

    I have just downloaded Calibre and tried to ‘Fetch news’ to be transferred direct to my Kindle Touch but it comes up as ‘Failed’. Does anyone know what I may have done wrong? Perhaps in the set up phase? Do I have to put Calibre on my ‘Approved Personal Document E-mail List’?

  18. LA

    Hey

    Thanks….
    That worked a treat after numerous (too many to count)unsuccessful attempts at accessing a epub publication fully on my Kindle

    L-A

  19. Julie Schiffelbein

    Oh My Goodness, I have been looking for a way to read Fast Women by Jennifer Crusie for months and couldn’t figure anything out. Just a few minutes ago, I followed these instructions and I am now very happily reading one of my favorite novels. Thank you very much for the help!!!

  20. Terri

    OK – have been using Calibre for all my downloading without a problem using epub. I just did a new book and lo and behold, in the middle of a page, it gives a page number and the book name so that it interrupts my reading. This happens on almost every page. I deleted the book from my Kindle and started from scratch and it still happened. Any suggestions? Thanks.

  21. Holden

    Thanks for that

  22. Karen Blue

    Thanks, it worked just like you said!

  23. [...] How to Read EPub Books on your Kindle Published by technicalguy on June 6th, 2011 – in Amazon Kindle, eBooks, How to, Small Business Technology From: http://techsupport.foreverwarm.com/how-to-read-epub-books-on-your-kindle [...]

  24. Jillian

    Would have worked perfectly but it says my book is locked by DRM :(

  25. HT

    I have just purchased a Pandigital which supports the Amazon Kindle library. I have tried to convert my epub books to mobi, works but my Pandigital still cannot read them. I have tried every way recommended in this forum.
    Has anyone succeeded with Pandigital?

    • Helen, I’ve never worked with Pandigital but hopefully someone else here can help you.

    • Shawn

      I have been using my Pandigital and Calibre for a long time now. Through trial and error I have found what works for me. First, I always convert into mobi format with Calibre. Then transfer them to the Pandigital. THEN, before disconnecting the tablet from your pc, go into the Kindle folder and transfer all the individual files from their individual subdirectories and place them into the main Kindle folder. Calibre separates each author into it’s own folder, and the Pandigital doesn;t like extra sub-directories in the Kindle folder. If you have DL’d your own cover, make sure you have internet access on the Pandigital or it will not update to the latest cover.

  26. Mike

    Just wanted to say thanks info on this page was really handy. Had gotten a lot of books in epub not realizing that it wasn’t supported by kindle, and was lucky to stumble upon this before repurchasing all those books so thanks for the help!

  27. Thatguy

    It is now possible to listen to .flac files on your Ipod!

    You just have to convert them to .mp3, .aac, .wav, or .aiff first.

    -10pts to the author for managing to contradict himself in the very first sentence of the article.

    And how did you determine that, “The Kindle definitely has the clearest screen and is currently the closest to actually reading a book”?
    I certainly haven’t noticed any significant difference between a Kindle, my 2.5 year old Sony, and a friend’s B&N Nook. But then again the Sony and the Nook ACTUALLY support epub.

  28. Tracy

    Awesome. Works perfect. Thank you for your help!

  29. Nathalie

    Wow, an amazing easy to use library and working brillanty to convert your files so they can be easily read on Kindly. Really appreciate your assistance, and have now also an easy to maintain libray on pc for future reference! Thank you Calibre for your e-book management!

  30. lj

    Does this apply to epub books borrowed from the library?

  31. [...] DAISY program. Many other books on Open Library are in ePub format, which is more difficult to transfer to a Kindle. (To read an ePub file in your Nook, check out these [...]

  32. Before converting,you should bypass epub drm first if your epubs are drm protected.
    Epubor epub drm removal can help you,enjoy.

  33. Madame Hardy

    Hi! I’ve been trying to sideload a book on to my Kindle Fire with no success. Calibre says that the transfer has succeeded, but when I look at the Books tab on my Kindle the book is not there; other books, bought from the Amazon store or e-mailed to my Amazon account are there. Have you had a chance to test Epub transfer to the Kindle Fire yet? (Note that I selected “Send to main memory”.)

    Here’s the epub I was trying to transfer: http://podcasts.ox.ac.uk/revengers-tragedy-thomas-middleton-ebook-document

    • I currently don’t have access to the Kindle Fire – however maybe on of the other readers will have an answer here, anyone? Calibre also has a support forum you can try.

      • Woody

        My new Kindle Fire reads the .mobi format like a champ. I did have to select “Device” instead of “Cloud” when I went to the Book page.

      • Amanda

        The new verison has a option for the kindle fire during setup try redownloading the program probably had to upgrade the Calibre version because Kindle Fire is new. Hope it helps.

    • darrin

      have you tried looking in the “docs” folder for your xfers?

    • aly

      I’ve found (with the Kindle Fire) that if you convert in Calibre and then right click, choose “send to device”, then “send specific format to”, then “main memory” it lets you send your mobi files to the fire and they show up on there. Make sure to edit the metadata and add covers, change authors etc. so they show up nicely. Good luck!

    • Mike

      When you send books to the fire through Calibre, they end up in “docs” instead of “books”. You should find them there.

  34. Dan

    Do I need a usb-micro to usb cable to do this or can you use the “cloud”? I can’t seem to get anything on my kindle fire from the cloud…looks like they may have gone the apple route of controlling how you manage your content to make sure you exclusively go through their store.

    • I would suspect you would need the usb cable to connect to Calibre, however I don’t see the Kindle Fire yet on Calbre’s website. If you try it please let us know how it goes.

  35. diddy

    “Yes, you can read an ePub book on your Amazon Kindle, but you must convert it first”
    That means that NO, you cannot read an ePub book on your Amazon Kindle. Hope they add support for this format soon…

  36. Maia

    i can convert a pdf file using calibre to an ebub file but the problem is that when i send it to the device it still turns up as a pdf file. on the computer i can chose to view pdf or epub but on my kindle it only sends the pdf. do you know how i can chose the epub version to send? if so then thankyou! files that are already epub to begin with work fine though.

  37. Stan Stirton

    Brilliant, I bought a kindle but wanted to transfer epubs. Your site and links worked beautifully, FIRST time. Thanks I’ll be passing this on.

    Stan

  38. Peg

    Hi, despite the nitpicking comments on the article I found it really easy to follow. Yes you do have to convert the epubs but it takes only a few seconds and a couple of cli cks. Thank you for the help I bought a Sony reader originally and a lot of books, sadly there was a fault on it I returned it and bought a kindle instead. I was left with a lot of books I couldn’t read until tonight,
    now I’m one happy kindle owner who’s going to enjoy my books. A big THANK YOU for the article.

    Peg :o)

  39. Lorie

    I’ve removed the DRM, added the books to Calibre, and tried to convert to either MOBI or PDF to read on my Kindle, and I’m still getting the message that they are protected. I converted the books from my Sony to read on my IPad, and it worked OK. What am I doing wrong?

  40. David

    Most Authors start with an EPUB then convert this over to the Kindle MOBI format. HTML + CSS will in 99% of conversions be disapointing spoiled; I’m not sure why this should have to be?

    • I too have noticed some conversion errors – sometimes the same passage of text is repeated. It seems to be related to special or unusual characters but I have yet to find the right cause.

  41. SW Tester

    Thanks for the article, appreciated.

  42. Cara

    Wow. Calibre is just amazing. It’s converting everything really fast and I LOVE the logo. It’s so pretty. I’ve kept in in my dock just to look at. Thanks :)

  43. [...] pdf. Certains pour le transformer en epub (Calibre fonctionne plutôt bien dans ce sens, voyez ce tutorial). J’ai testé ces possibles dans le cadre de mes archives (donc XVIIIeme siècle) et le résultat [...]

  44. Sylvia

    Its a pitty that the Kindle format does not transfer into EPUB, I got a Generic brand due to I did not want to be locked into Amazon, but I would like to access some of their books as some are cheeper on Amazn and some are cheeper on other sites that have the Epub format. It would give the consumer the opportunity for a good deals across the board, I have been on Amazon and cross priced it on another site and there can be a big difference, also in reverse. Would be excellent if we could use all sites.

  45. [...] Instructions for converting ePubs to Kindle format. Rate this: Like this:LikeBe the first to like this post. [...]

  46. wty

    This is so profoundly retarded, I’m speechless . You batch ? If the files need to be converted, why would you suggest the kindle can show epubs ?

    • I think you misunderstand the title. I don’t suggest the Kindle can show epubs, this is a way to read an epub you have – on a Kindle.

      • Stephen

        I wouldn’t worry about wty’s response.

        It’s obvious that he/she can’t read.

      • Simon

        I beg to differ. You say you don’t suggest the Kindle can show epubs, yet I quote:

        “Yes, Amazon’s Kindle will read EPUB’s, but not by default”

        The implication of this is that the Kindle will read epub files but you have to do something to enable this behaviour. Perhaps change a setting on the Kindle.

        What you meant was:

        “Amazon’s Kindle doesn’t read epubs. You can convert an epub to a file the Kindle will read though.

        • david

          I fully agree with Simon’s comment.

          I started to read only because you suggested that Kindle can be made to read epubs. Only after reading more did I understand that you do not have the information that your title suggests and instead provide the trivial information on how to use Calibre.

          I did not appreciate this article.

  47. Matt Woodmansey

    Great guide. Well written and informative. Thanks.

  48. Nadine

    I’ve tried converting ePub book to Kindle but I got a message saying that the book could not be converted because of DMR.

    How do I bypass that?

    • Nadine, depending on where you sourced the original ePub, DRM can be an issue. DRM is Digital Rights Management and there is no facility within Calibre to strip it off. If the ePub is legitimately yours you will need to find a utility that will remove DRM, if possible. I cannot advise on that however an Internet search will help to tell you what is available. Be careful on this though, Digital Rights exist for a reason so make sure you do indeed have the right to remove it from this book.

      • Alex

        Only a consideration: I’m sure you can find a way to strip the DRM off, but in never case you have the (legal) right to do so. So IMHO, like Stephen said, Kindle can’t read ePub, because it can not LEGALLY read the ePub with DRM.

        • According to (http://arstechnica.com/software/news/2010/07/court-breaking-drm-for-a-fair-use-is-legal.ars) , breaking the DRM on an ePub book that you own rights to is not illegal. It’s part of the Digital Millenium Copyright Act (DCMA). If you have rights to the content and you make a second copy then the federal court says that’s ok. At no time should you be breaking DRM on illegally downloaded ebooks.
          It’s a good distinction Alex, thanks for raising the issue.

          • wordsmithworker

            As a Kindle owner, I was interested in this article to legally expand my library; thanks for the info!

            As a writer,I appreciate the two of you, Alex and techguy, for making the rights distinction. However, techguy, owning rights to content is NOT the same thing as owning a copy of a book.

            Breaking the DRM lock-out is illegal UNLESS you own the legal right to do so; Alex was right on the money, pun intended, on that one. You can’t copy a hardback book, and you change change a DRM-locked e-book format, simply because you own a copy.

            Making a back-up copy OF THE ORIGINAL ELECTRONIC FORMATTED content is a stipulated right.

            Under US copyright law, no rights are assumed. EVERY right–including format, including copying–must be specifically given. It’s the only law in the US Code that does not follow the legal mandate, “Silence is implied consent.” Changing formats is not a given right.

            Calibre does not contain DRM-avoidance software for a reason: It’s illegal.

            My question at this point is how do I determine if DRM is involved or not before I attempt to convert files?

            (Hey, I’m a writer, not a geek. ;))

  49. [...] the original: How to read EPUB books on your Kindle Tags: amazon, another-reader, epub, find-cheaper, free-books, kindle, open-source, reader, [...]

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