Books on the Nightstand discussion

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Dust jackets

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message 1: by Melissa W (last edited Aug 26, 2010 12:11PM) (new)

Melissa W (melissawiebe80) | 199 comments Does anybody else find themselves pulling the dust jackets off of hardcovers that they own? While I like having a hardcover copy of a book, I find the biggest pet peeve that I have with them is the dust jacket and am usually pulling them off (I know at my library job, we don't laminate the dust jackets, if the covers match; if they don't, then we laminate them and they are a hassle to fold once they have been laminated. Trust me, they are) and usually end up wrecking them or losing them (can't find the dust jacket for one of my HP books). I realize why publishers do this, but I wish that the publishers would put the same cover on the harder cover as they put on the dust jacket. I realize that the dust jacket is meant to protect the book cover, but unless it is taped to the book, it becomes a hassle and I end up waiting for the pbk copy anyways (there is also a cost issue; I don't exactly like paying $30+ for a hardcover; that's the Canadian price and when I can pay about half for a hardcover, I will, but when I am forced to pay about $32 or $35 for a hardcover, I am usually not going to purchase it, unless it is a book I really want, but I digress).

I am just wondering if anybody else has this issue or feels this way about dust jackets


message 2: by Callie (new)

Callie (calliekl) | 646 comments I do! As soon as I get a hardcover I toss the dust jacket. They make the book more difficult to hold, in my opinion. With a long book, I carry it around so much that it ends up tearing or getting dirty anyway, so might as well not worry about it!


message 3: by Cindy (new)

Cindy (cwsmith) | 104 comments Me too! Off they come immediately. However, I do save them and once the book is read, I put it back on. Some books go back on the shelves with their nice, clean dust jackets ... or some get sold with "dust jacket intact" condition! Would the elimination of dust jackets makes books cost less? Or do we (readers) need that dust jacket to entice us to buy the book?


message 4: by Melissa W (new)

Melissa W (melissawiebe80) | 199 comments Cindy wrote: "Me too! Off they come immediately. However, I do save them and once the book is read, I put it back on. Some books go back on the shelves with their nice, clean dust jackets ... or some get sold..."

To answer your last question, I think the dust jacket is meant to entice us to purchase the book; I am more likely to buy a book that I am waffling on purchasing if the dust jacket is really nice (price also influences whether or not I get a book. I purchased "The Passage" for about $15, about 60% off the cover price, which was about $35 Canadian).


message 5: by Linda (new)

Linda | 2780 comments Mod
I'm a keep-the-cover-person. One exception would be a really thick book in which the dust jacket moves constantly (yes, sometimes on smaller books, too). If, within a short time, it is clear to me that I may damage the cover, THEN the cover comes off. It always gets put back when I'm done reading.

When I was still teaching, I lent a book to a colleague who promptly removed the dust jacket and placed it safely in his desk drawer. Before he returned the book, my father died and I was off work then the colleague got reassigned as a principal. The former-student of his who became his replacement, found the dust jacket in his drawer and threw it out - fortunately I saw it and rescued it.

I'm now, preparing for my library's upcoming book sale. I see boxes and boxes of books from the 50s and further back without dust jackets. What happened to them? When did dust jackets became de rigueur?

A history of book dust jackets might make an interesting book.


message 6: by Sandi (new)

Sandi (sandikal) | 89 comments I love dust jackets! I love the artwork and reading the blurbs on them. To me, a dust jacket is an integral part of a hardback book.


message 7: by Esther (last edited Aug 27, 2010 01:50AM) (new)

Esther (eshchory) Melissa W wrote: "Does anybody else find themselves pulling the dust jackets off of hardcovers that they own? While I like having a hardcover copy of a book, I find the biggest pet peeve that I have with them is th..."
I rarely purchase hardbacks and almost always remove the dust jackets while reading - they are of little use and get damaged too easily.

In our library we purchase a lot of Russian hardbacks. They have no dust jacket and the artwork is on the cover. Much more convenient.


message 8: by Kerry (last edited Aug 27, 2010 02:04AM) (new)

Kerry (rocalisa) I, too, love dust jackets on books. Especially ones that have beautiful cover art and are on a book from a favourite author. In fact, I'll often take the dust jacket off while reading the book in order to keep it pristine, and put it back on when I've finished.

I have a friend who is the same way, to the point that if she borrows one of my hardcovers, she leaves the dust jacket on the bookcase at my house and takes the book home without it.

I suspect I have some books where the dust jacket is in much better condition than the actual book.


message 9: by Callie (new)

Callie (calliekl) | 646 comments Esther wrote: "Melissa W wrote: "Does anybody else find themselves pulling the dust jackets off of hardcovers that they own? While I like having a hardcover copy of a book, I find the biggest pet peeve that I ha..."

Esther, I was just about to ask if they can print the artwork right on the cover! It much be more expensive to do so rather than print dustjackets.


message 10: by Esther (new)

Esther (eshchory) Callie wrote: "....Esther, I was just about to ask if they can print the artwork right on the cover! It much be more expensive to do so rather than print dustjackets. ..."

Yet the Russian books are incredibly cheap, much cheaper than the other paperbacks we buy.
The hardbacks are still filled with cheapish recycled paper and the covers are not 'high art'. But they are perfect for the library and stand up well to a lot of use.

While dust jackets may once have been connected to price and the desire to 'pretty-up' a plain cloth cover I don't think that is the case now as so many hardbacks have exactly the same artwork printed on the actual cover.


message 11: by Tenoko1 (new)

Tenoko1 *horrified* No, no, no!! You can't get rid of the dust jacket! The book is incomplete then! Damaged! Like those people that bend the covers (on paperbacks) around to the back of the book so that now it's all bent and the spine is all creased or they fold down the corner of the page instead of using a bookmark! Sacrilege!

Sorry. Pet peeve. Drives me crazy. ha ha


message 12: by Michael (new)

Michael (mkindness) | 537 comments Mod
I love the dust jacket, but hate reading a HC with the dust jacket on. I agree it makes it hard to hold. I take the jacket off, put it on the shelf while I'm reading, and when I finish the book, it goes back on.


message 13: by Ann (new)

Ann (akingman) | 2097 comments Mod
I almost *never* remove the dustjacket, and it doesn't ever bother me. In fact, I usually use the flap as my bookmark.

My 8 year-old, however, removes the dustjacket as soon as she starts reading, and they are never to be paired again. Someday when she's grown and out of the house I just know I'll find a stash of dustjackets in some out of the way place.


message 14: by Melissa W (new)

Melissa W (melissawiebe80) | 199 comments Just to clarify, I do put the dust jacket back on once I have finished the book.


message 15: by Merc (new)

Merc (oswinssouffle) | 21 comments I remove the jacket because I like the hardcover. I am a bit of a minimalist so the hardcover usually pleases me more.

There are a one book that I own that still have the jacket on, though.


message 16: by Bobbi (new)

Bobbi | 153 comments I'm with Ann, in that I *never* remove the dust jacket, and reading a hardcover with a jacket on has never bothered me. (A jacket on the book, not on me - just in case Eric is preparing a snappy comment!) MY pet peeve is people who pick up a book that's on display and push up the dust jacket when they put the book back or, even worse, TEAR the jacket.

There - I've vented - I feel much better now.


message 17: by Steven (new)

Steven | 2 comments For me, I leave the dust jacket on if I am reading at home. But if I take the book anywhere, off comes the jacket to insure that it stays in good shape. If I buy a book used (which is how I buy most of my hardcovers), it depends on what condition the dust jacket is in whether or not I keep it on the book.


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