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Old 01-11-2011, 07:39 AM   #1
Alison C
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Problem editing metadata of books from Mobile Read

I'm sure there is something really basic that I'm getting wrong, but I can't figure it out, so I'm hoping some kind person will take pity on a techno-numpty, please.

I have a Kindle 3, and have been downloading books both from Amazon and from the Mobile Read library. I've installed Calibre, and successfully changed the metadata on some books where necessary. But two keep defeating me: Hunger, by Kurt Hamsun, and Enchanted April, by Elizabeth von Arnim. The names of these books show as "Arnim_Enchanted April" and "Hamsun_Hunger", so the Kindle sticks them at the end of the alphabetical list and won't sort them.

First I tried changing the names of the PRC files themselves and then transferring the new version to the Kindle. No luck.

Then, after installing Calibre, I edited the metadata for both books. They show up exactly as they should in Calibre, but again, when I transfer the renamed version to the Kindle, nothing has changed. This is driving me a tiny bit nuts now, so I hope someone can sort me out. Apologies for being longwinded as well as (probably) daft!

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Old 01-11-2011, 08:25 AM   #2
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A conversion, save to disk, or send to device (from within calibre) should write the metadata changes to the ebook file (with calibre's default preferences).

Until one of those three things happens, the metadata changes exist only in calibre's db.

Did you use calibre's "Send to device" to transfer the ebook to your Kindle... or did you just copy it from calibre's library and paste it into the Kindle's Document folder?

The latter would explain why the metadata change didn't "take".
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Old 01-11-2011, 10:21 AM   #3
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PRC Meta issues

I am having a similar problem, some of the Harvard Classics (at least, I haven't looked extensively) that I've just loaded onto my (new, first e reading device) PocketBook 360 do not take the meta-data that I've updated in Calibre. See attachment - I had them all nice as the top several appear. I've used Calibre to "send to device" only.

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File Type: bmp scr0001.bmp (234.5 KB, 1398 views)

Last edited by deferredreward; 01-11-2011 at 11:11 AM.
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Old 01-11-2011, 10:40 AM   #4
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Hi, DiapDealer, and thanks for your response. I think when I originally put the files on the Kindle I selected them all and dragged them to the "device" icon on the Calibre menu bar. So I've just tried the alternative approaches. First I used "Send to device", only to have the same result. Then I took the "Save to disk" route and then repeated the "Send to device" step, but unfortunately it still hasn't worked. I'd really appreciate any further thoughts that you and others might be able to offer. This is so frustrating!

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Old 01-11-2011, 10:55 AM   #5
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@Alison C: Are the two books in question infested with DRM? If they came from Amazon, then they probably are. Calibre cannot update metadata in books that haven't been disinfected.
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Old 01-11-2011, 10:57 AM   #6
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Hi, chaley. The books aren't from Amazon; they're from MobileRead's own library. I've downloaded plenty of other books from here, but these are the only two causing any problem. Thanks for your reply.
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Old 01-11-2011, 11:25 AM   #7
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convert them from prc to MOBI in calibre
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Old 01-12-2011, 05:27 AM   #8
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Hi, Kovid, and many thanks for that. I've successfully converted the books to Mobi, and the problem is now almost solved ...

That ominous "almost" is because when I transfer the books to the Kindle, although the title and author names now look normal (a big improvement), the alphabetical sorting isn't working as it should. So Knut Hamsun appears under K, and Eliz. von Arnim under E.

I am stumped (again), because the metadata in Calibre looks exactly as it should - indeed, I have two books by Eliz. von Arnim, the metadata for each follows precisely the same format, yet one sorts under A and the other under E.

Sorry to be a pain, but any help would be gratefully received.

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Old 01-12-2011, 06:25 AM   #9
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Using edit metadata, check the author sort values for each book to see if they are the same. My guess is that they are not, and that if you sort by author in the library, the books will not be together.
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Old 01-12-2011, 07:48 AM   #10
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Quote:
Using edit metadata, check the author sort values for each book to see if they are the same. My guess is that they are not, and that if you sort by author in the library, the books will not be together.
No, the author sort values are exactly the same, hence my puzzlement; and when the Calibre library is sorted by author the two books I'm having problems with appear exactly where they should - in alphabetical sequence by surname. But on the Kindle these two, and only these two, sort themselves on first name - so the sequence goes like this:

Elizabeth Gaskell / Thomas Hardy / Jane Harris / Susan Hill / Knut Hamsun / Hilary Mantel

instead of having Hamsun after Gaskell. Deeply puzzled ...

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Old 01-12-2011, 08:00 AM   #11
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Is the individual author sort value correct for Hamsun? In the tag browser on the left-hand side, right-click on Hamsun and choose 'manage authors'. Verify that the sort value is what you expect.

Edit: Take a look at http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=98470, which is a long discussion of author sorting on the kindle. There might be something there that helps explain what is happening

Last edited by chaley; 01-12-2011 at 08:03 AM.
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Old 01-12-2011, 08:24 AM   #12
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Is the individual author sort value correct for Hamsun? In the tag browser on the left-hand side, right-click on Hamsun and choose 'manage authors'. Verify that the sort value is what you expect.
Thanks for persevering - I do appreciate it. I've followed those steps, and yes, the author sort value is exactly as it should be. I'll have a read through the thread you've suggested, starting in the morning. Thanks again.
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Old 01-12-2011, 09:07 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by Alison C View Post
Thanks for persevering - I do appreciate it. I've followed those steps, and yes, the author sort value is exactly as it should be. I'll have a read through the thread you've suggested, starting in the morning. Thanks again.
When you send to device, are you making sure you are sending the converted book and not the original? If you have two saved in the library you may have to pick the format to send, same when you send to disk.
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Old 01-12-2011, 10:49 AM   #14
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Hi, Maggie-Me. Yes, I checked this - and indeed removed the PRC version from the library to avoid any confusion.
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Old 01-13-2011, 04:42 AM   #15
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Quote:
Take a look at http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=98470, which is a long discussion of author sorting on the kindle. There might be something there that helps explain what is happening
Fantastic! Thanks so much for this pointer; my problem is solved at last. I did try searching for threads on the same topic before posting this one, but clearly wasn't using the right terms.

The answer became clear in a post by Dark Laguna, though on re-reading the thread it was implied in things said by chaley and Isherwood, so kudos and thanks to all three of you. All I had to do was go to Preferences, Conversion, Output Options, Mobi Output, and then tick the box for "Use author sort for author". I re-sent the books, and hey presto! all is well.

Thanks to everyone for their patience and willingness to help.

Alison
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