In addition to clearing out my physical bookshelves, I’ve been *passively* looking for a way to organize and easily access my digital books on my iPad for reading. My father and I hope to set up a “family” library for ebook sharing, so I started looking at the available software to get it done.
I found the answer in Calibre, a free download for Mac, Windows and Linux. I’m now in the process of converting 100 ebooks from my collection per week into a single format — I’ve selected ePub. This rate gives me some hope that I may, eventually, get them all moved, formatted and properly displayed.
I’m downloading metadata on each and pulling down my favorite cover (I like my virtual bookshelves to be pretty!) I’m also eliminating duplicates and selecting the best version of any duplicated title. It’s taking a bit of time, but the results (I’ve already done 100 for this week) are fantastic!
It was a toss-up between ePub and Mobi formats for awhile, but the deciding factor was my favorite reader on the iPad – iBooks. I like the Kindle app, which uses .mobi, but it doesn’t allow me to “categorize” my books – they are all there swapping around in one huge, messy pile. In iBooks, I have a shelf for writing books, one for classics, one for children’s books, one for fluff, one for reference books, one for educational books and so forth.
If you are looking for an affordable, easy solution for your own ebook library, give Calibre a try.