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Old 07-07-2019, 06:20 AM   #1
Sissinghurst
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Change page size? Also line spacing

I have a couple of ebooks where it seems like the page is too big for my Kindle. There are lines missing from the end and a square with arrows appears in the centre of the screen if I touch to try and turn the page.
The books display fine on PC in Calibre.

So I think I need to adjust the page size. Where in Calibre do I do this and how do I make sure I get the correct page size? Just get it from any other ebook that displays okay on the same Kindle?

Separate thing. I sometimes want to make the space between lines wider than can be done via the adjustments in the settings of the Kindle itself. How can I do this in Calibre without otherwise messing up the books? Some books do have wider line spacing than others anyway so I'm assuming it can be done.
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Old 07-07-2019, 08:41 AM   #2
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Is it possible that these e-books, with too big pages, are PDF-files?

In that case there is not much to do about this, except using the e-reader to zoom in or out or use the PDF re-flow function if your e-reader supports that. Or the books are broken. Try to find/buy/download the book again and/or in a different format. Contact the book seller and complain and request a fix or a refund.

About line spacing.
Calibre has very powerful function for converting books. While converting you can adjust line spacing and a lot more. When I "fix" books I usually rip out most of the embedded font information and formatting. And I end up with almost plain text. And I can use my e-reader to select font, line spacing and size. And everything re-flows to fit.

Sometimes it is even possible to convert PDFs, if they are just plain text PDFs, but usually the result is gibberish.

Sometimes the book is a bad conversion from PDF, or some other format, and you might use calibre conversion to improve it. Convert lines to paragraphs and fix hard page breaks, chapter breaks, headers and footers and so on. But it is difficult and time consuming to get everything right.

The conversion can also be used to scale some parts of books, for instance images. You just need to select the right output profile in the page setup for the conversion.

It might be best to first convert to epub, without any changes. Then convert from epub to epub, with changes. And finally convert back to a format you can use on your e-reader, from epub without changes.

Last edited by Adoby; 07-07-2019 at 08:48 AM.
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Old 07-09-2019, 07:10 AM   #3
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The page is coded as a table with a cell entry or table row being too large.

The square with the arrows is supposed to allow you to move around within the table. Tap once on the screen to get the square to appear. Then tap on the square to activate. You're supposed to be able to navigate the table at this point, but I'm not sure how this works on a Touch screen. The old Kindles had a cursor that you could use for this.

If it doesn't happen too often, you can see more of the text by temporarily reducing the font size. Change back to your regular size afterwards.

The table will extend close to the edge of the screen (whatever the Kindle's default margin is), so to turn the page (for a Touch screen) tap within a cm or so from the side.


To eliminate the problem altogether, you need to change the code.

Calibre has a "Linearize tables" option in the conversion's Look & Feel section (Layout tab). This will change all tables within the book.

Ebooks will use tables when some special formatting is required, as with poetry, plays or some nonfiction works. If you use "Linearize tables" then all the tables will be affected. To selectively change the tables you would have to recode in the Editor.


Space between lines is "line-height". You set it in the CSS. Use the Editor for this. You can set it in Calibre's "Extra CSS" field (Conversion's Look & Feel section - Styling tab), but I think this will affect line-height for everything. To do this selectively, use the Editor. Default is usually "line-height: 1.2"
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Old 07-11-2019, 05:18 AM   #4
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Thanks very much Jeff. I will try that.

It's interesting you mention poetry. I was also wondering about how to improve the layout for poetry as sometimes it is all shoved to the right hand side of the screen. This must be poetry that is not in tables. Is there another way to improve layout of poetry like this without creating a table? Maybe adjusting a left hand margin?

When you say "I think this will affect line-height for everything", does this mean that setting it in "Calibre's "Extra CSS" field" will adjust line height in all books? And to adjust a specific book, use the Editor?

Adoby, they aren't PDFs. They don't have any of the usual problems with PDFs, or converted PDFs I've seen, just this issue where a couple of lines fall off the end of the display screen.
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Old 07-12-2019, 12:12 PM   #5
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If by "shoved to the right hand side" you mean "justified" then you can change that to "left aligned."

Poetry is usually left aligned and often uses a hanging indent. Open with the Editor to see what class is used for the relevant lines. Add or change the alignment as follows in the css:

.classname (<-- whatever name is being used)
{
text-align: left;
margin-left: 2em;
text-indent: -2em;
}

There are complications to hanging indents which I won't go into here. Since you appear to have a more recent Kindle, most of your ebooks should be in the KF8 format which allows for complex hanging indents. If you need to use the older mobi 6/7 format, then the left margin and the negative indent must use the same increment as in the above example.

For "classname", sometimes they'll use the same classname as for regular sentences. In that case, any changes you make will affect all other instances of that classname. So either keep the change minimal, like just left alignment or add a new classname for poetry and use that.


Regarding the "Extra CSS" field affecting everything - for this field to work, it must override whatever currently exists in the CSS. If you don't look inside the CSS, you can't see how a particular formatting is being handled. So you need to use broad strokes to ensure that you change what you want. But by doing so, you can end up affecting more than you intended.

The field only affects the book you're working on.

Personally, I always use the Editor. It gives you more control. I would suggest you do the same. Ebooks are, for the most part, like ordinary html. It's not that hard. You don't need to know everything to get started. Just what you need to make the changes you want.

Make a test copy of book, open it in the Editor, and take a look around.
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Old 07-24-2019, 04:27 AM   #6
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Thanks again.

This was in .mobi. Though I have had to start using azw3 as the Kindle has decided to stop indexing newly added mobis for some reason.

A curious thing is that in these mobis, poetry often shows as apparently right-aligned, but then click on an endnote, and then return to the text, and the main text is then arranged with a left alignment
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