Cover not shown on Kobo (ePub)

My Cover is included in the .epub file, and is correctly generated.
In the ePub, the cover image is present in the “OPS > images” folder
If I open the ePub with the Mac “Books” application, the cover is present, the very first page.
Not on Kobo… (Aura H20 and Aura)
When compiling to Kindle, the cover is shown, no problem.
Any idea why it doesn’t work on Kobo?
Wasn’t this a ePub version problem already discussed? ePub 2 vs ePub 3 ?
Any light on how to have my cover correctly shown would be immensely appreciated
Steve J

I really need to publish and I’m stuck.

Have you contacted Kobo support? If the cover appears in Apple Books, then Scrivener has done as it was asked.


The problem is the resulting ePub 3 (format supported by Kobo).
I tried it on a Tolino eReader (never heard of that brand), same problem.
I reverted back to Scrivener 2 and was able to publish correctly (ePub 2).

The other solution is to have Scrivener 3 export as Kindle mobi, then transform it into ePub 3 (not ePub 2) via Calibre.
Then that ePub 3 works perfectly on Tolino and Kobo.
So it obviously feels like something is screwed in Scrivener ePub 3 output.

Hello, Steve.

Are either of these links relevant or helpful?

  1. Kobo says that some of its readers don’t support EPUB3 (Kobo Original and Kobo Wi-Fi ). … pp-support

  1. When made aware of EPUB3 issues with Kobo and Tolino, the developer of Scrivener provided an EPUB2 compile format that can be used in Scrivener 3, meaning that users don’t have to revert to using Scrivener 2.

Wishing you every success with your publication.


Hi Merx
Thanks for the link. I was not aware of the Import extension. I’ll try to publish to ePub2 form Scrivener 3
The Kobo I tried is are very recent models, all with ePub3 support though.
If I have time I will compare what is causing the glitch in the ePub3 produced by Scrivener compared to the ePub3 produced by Calibre.
I’m sure that it lies in a CSS. Scrivener correctly embed the cover image but it’s not seen correctly.

Thanks for your help.

Hello, Steve.

I understand Katherine’s point about the compile working for other devices so Scrivener seems to be doing its job.

And I understand your point that Calibre is clearly doing something different if its EPUB 3 output doesn’t have the same issue.

Error or difference, this might be something that the developer can (and might want to) tweak. I think the solutions you have found now are clearly the most expedient in the current circumstances, but if you do have time to share some details of your findings, the developer has a page for reporting bugs, so you might get a better long-term solution if you share your findings there.

All the best.


Just a minor footnote here, but so you’re aware, when Scrivener 3 compiles to mobi, it’s compiling to ePub and then running KindleGen (from the Kindle Previewer application bundle) to convert to mobi. That’s another potential transformation in there that could be changing the equation.