Reading manga on a Kindle is perhaps the best possible reading experience outside of picking up a physical copy. Some publishers, such as through Humble Bundle, allow you to download DRM-free content periodically, but the steps required to then upload that content onto your Kindle can be a bit confusing to navigate if you don't know what you're doing. If you've ever thought about reading your digital library on your Kindle, these steps will guide you through the process.
You'll be needing a few bits of software in order to get things started.
- Your Manga/Comic files. These are typically offered in a
.CBZformat, though you might also have them in other formats such as
.CBR, .PNG, etcdepending on the publisher source. Regardless of the format, KCC (below) should make prepping and packaging those files simple so that you can upload them into Calibre.
- Kindle Comic Converter (KCC). You can find the latest release here, which was uploaded recently.
- Calibre, a fantastic ebook management platform. You can find the latest release(s) here.
- Optional (but useful): Jim Miller's EPUB Merge Plugin. This allows you to collate several files into one, which is useful if you're looking to merge several individual chapters into one volume, which drastically reduces the size of your overall library if you like to keep things neat.
While UI wise these applications aren't the prettiest, they're functional and well supported by their creators.
Converting Your Files
I would recommend moving all of your files under one directory on your system so that everything is nice and organized, but you can be wild and free if you so choose. Once that's done, you'll want to launch KCC:
- For Manga, make sure that
Manga Modeis enabled.
- You can choose to add files using the
Add Directoryoption, which only works with
.JPG, .PNG, or .GIF, otherwise you'll have to add individual files manually.
- Set your output to
EPUB. You can also use
MOBI/AZW3, however you will not be able to take advantage of merging these files into one single file using the EPUB Merge Plugin afterwards, so it's not really recommended.
- Set your target device. I'm going to assume that you're reading this because you have a Kindle, but Kobo is also supported here.
- Convert! This will create
.EPUBfiles in the same directory.
Managing Your Content in Calibre
Configuring Calibre is relatively straightforward. The following steps are after you've finished configuring it.
- Optional: If you're looking to collate your files and you've already downloaded the EPUB Merge Plugin above, you're going to need to install it. To do so, click
Preferences -> Plugins -> Load Plugin from File, then select the plugin from Github.
- The neat thing about EPUB Merge is it will create a Table of Contents where each Chapter is a single file, if you want to flip back and forth while reading. It's extremely useful, and on by default. You can adjust this within the plugin settings if you'd like to toggle it off though.
- Depending on where your files are stored, you can either move everything in all at once (not recommended) or choose multiple files at a time.
- Optional: Select your individual
EPUBfiles and click
Epub Mergein your Calibre toolbar. The plugin will prompt you to make sure of what you're merging. If you do happen to mess this up, you can always restart by using KCC again and re-importing into Calibre.
- Convert the file(s) to
AZW3by right clicking the individual file (or the merged one) and selecting
Convert Books, then choose
AZW3. In my experience, this helps avoid any potential formatting errors.
- Edit the metadata. If you've followed the optional steps, you can add in all of the metadata you want by right clicking on the newly merged volume and selecting
Edit Metadata. I like to add covers (if they weren't already there when you downloaded them). This gets even better with the new Kindle feature that displays your cover image when the device is in Sleep Mode.
- Plug in your Kindle device and send the content to your device by right-clicking the file(s) and selecting
Send to Device -> Send Specific Format To -> Main Memory, and choose
- Enjoy your content on a device that is perfect for reading manga and comics!