Why Can’t I Permanently Delete Books From iBooks?

Are you having trouble trying to delete books from iBooks? You’re not alone. Many people need help to delete books from iBooks permanently. It’s a frustrating experience, so why does it happen?

Because books are stored in the cloud, you cannot delete them permanently from iBooks. It does not matter if they are deleted from your device storage. They will still be accessible in the cloud. This is why you can’t permanently delete books from iBooks.

In this blog post, I’ll look more at why it’s impossible to delete books from iBooks permanently.

Apple Makes It Difficult To Delete Books From iBooks

Why Can't I Permanently Delete Books From iBooks?

Apple has created a system that makes it extremely difficult to delete books from the iBooks app. To remove a book from your library, follow these steps.

  1. Navigate to the Settings app.
  2. Scroll down to the iBooks app.
  3. Select Delete Books.

However, this doesn’t delete the books from your device. It just removes them from your library view.  To delete the books, you have to open the iBooks app and follow these steps:

  1. In the iBooks app, go to your library.
  2. Select the book or books you want to delete.
  3. Tap “Edit” in the top-right corner.
  4. Tap on the red “Delete” button or Trash icon next to each book. 

The Books Take Up Too Much Space

Why Can't I Permanently Delete Books From iBooks?

It can be incredibly frustrating when you realize that your iBooks library is taking up more and more space on your device. Unfortunately, Apple needs to make it easier to delete books from iBooks.

What worse? Even if you are done with the book, there is no simple way to free up the storage space it is taking up. This is also true if you have a lot of books on your device. The amount of space they are consuming can quickly become overwhelming. 

Fortunately, you can do a few things to free up some of that storage space. 

One option is to use an app such as Goodreader, which lets you store ebooks in its cloud-based system rather than on your device. This way, you can still access them whenever you want without taking up valuable local storage space. 

You can also archive books from iBooks directly, which will move them to an archival folder in iCloud but keep them available for viewing anytime you want. This will help reduce the number of items stored on your device without deleting them permanently.  

Lastly, you can also keep the ebooks you plan to read shortly on your device rather than downloading every ebook you come across. Doing this will minimize clutter and reduce the amount of data stored locally.

5 Reasons You Might Want To Delete A Book

Apple does not allow users to delete books from their iBooks library permanently. Deleting a book will only remove it from the library view, but it won’t remove it from your device’s memory. 

Here are 5 reasons for why you might want to delete a book.

  1. To free up storage space on your device. iBooks can take up a large amount of storage space, and deleting books you’re no longer reading can make a big difference.
  2. You may want to delete a book you’ve already read to avoid accidentally rereading it.
  3. You should delete a book with outdated information to avoid relying on obsolete information.
  4. You may want to delete a book you don’t like. It may not live up to the hype, or it doesn’t fit your taste. 
  5. You may want to delete a book if it contains inappropriate content for the reader. 

How To Hide A Book In iBooks?

If you want to delete a book from your iBooks library, the only way to do so is to hide it. It means that you won’t be able to view the book in your library, but it will still exist in your iTunes account and could be restored if needed.

To hide a book from your library, follow these steps.

  1. Open the iBooks app and locate the book you wish to delete.
  2. Tap the three dots icon at the top right of the book cover.
  3. Select Remove from the pop-up menu.

The book will then be hidden from your library. To restore the book, go to the Purchased tab in the iBooks Store and tap the cloud icon next to the book title. The book will then be re-downloaded to your library.

4 Other Ways To Get Rid Of Books

There are also some other ways to get rid of books on iBooks. Let’s explore them below.

Archive Them 

You can archive books in iBooks and free up space on your device. To do this, select the text and tap the Archive button. It will hide the book from your library, but you can always find it in the Archived section. 

Send Them to the Cloud

You can sync your iBooks library with iCloud Drive and store your books there. All you need to do is launch the Books app, go to Settings, then iCloud, and toggle iCloud Drive on. 

Delete and Reinstall

You can delete a book and reinstall it later if you need it again. Long-press on the book cover, then select Delete from Library. When you need it back, open the iBooks Store, search for the book, then select Get or Buy

Share Them with Friends 

You can share eBooks with friends who also have iBooks on their devices. To do this, select a book, tap the Share icon, and choose how you want to send the book. 

These are just a few ways to get rid of books from your iBooks library. While deleting them permanently may be more challenging, these methods can help you manage your library and keep your device clutter-free.


It’s no wonder many people struggle with deleting books from iBooks! It is a very convoluted process, requiring several steps and taps before you can delete a book.

And if you don’t want to delete all of your books, there’s no way to select multiple books to delete at once; you must delete each one individually.

The good thing is that you can archive your books or add them to the cloud to save space on your phone. You can also reinstall the book and may install it later when you want to read it.

Hassan Shahzad

I am Hassan! (Book Lover) at Books Rookie; we (like-minded book readers) share our knowledge of books/digital books with our readers.

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