Discussion: Naked Hardbacks

December 3, 2014     erinbook     Discussion, Feature

Naked Hardcovers
Have you ever ordered a scratch and dent from Book Outlet and found that it has come without the dust jacket? Or maybe got a used book from a thrift shop that was super cheap because the book was naked? I love the cover art that comes with books, it’s part of the appeal, but sometimes it’s just easier to take the jacketless book.
So the question is this: do you require your book to have a dust jacket or is the content of the book enough?
I have a bit of a thing about my books matching on the shelves, cover changes being one of my biggest pet peeves. But I do have a few books that sit on their shelves without dust jackets. For the most part they are singular books without a series, or the copy of Reboot I got scratch and dent from Book Outlet (I really need to replace it with a paperback to match the ARC of Rebel). They sit sort of sadly away from their friends on the shelf or stick out like a sore thumb.
I wish that more publishers would put something interesting under their books’ dust jackets. It would be much better for books that have lost their jackets if there was something else to look at. I also wish you could purchase replacement dust jackets in case of damage or loss.
What about you? Do you have naked books on your shelf? How do you feel about them?
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10 responses to “Discussion: Naked Hardbacks

  1. I think the dustjackets are the best part of a hardcover book! I don't have any naked books on my shelf. That would ruin me. OMG If u want to see a good book that looks beautiful under its book jacket, check out the hardcover copy of The Queen of Zombie Hearts by Gena Showalter. I own all the books in that series in hardcover and underneath, the books are like neon colors and there are metallic words and even quotes from the booK!

    Alex @ The Book's Buzz

  2. Dust jackets are cool, but I usually end up losing mine. I don't know how this happens. But, somewhere in my room there is a black hole that eats dust jackets. I suppose if I had a bookshelf to display all of my books, I might care a little more, but most of my books are stacked in plastic crates.

    Luckily, I mostly read paperbacks and e-books. Cheaper, you know? So I can read more!

  3. I love cover art, but buying used it doesn't matter to me, in fact the books on my living room book shelves have no dust jackets on purpose. I store the dust jacket if it had one, but most of them are older books and reissues of classics. I leave the dust jacket on coffee table art books, part because that's where the decorating appeal comes from, and it gives them some protection from the activity around that area. All my other books are in my bedroom, but if I ever have a library room I will take the jackets off of those books, too. I think I would frame some of my very favorites to hang on the walls.

    • I suppose if my home were decorated in a modern, or post-modern style, the book jackets would look just fine, but it is traditional, ala English manor house, so the shiny, often brightly colored dust jackets look out of place. My bedroom is a mish-mash of boho and shabby chic eclectic, so in there it doesn't matter.

  4. I usually buy paperbacks when I buy physical copies as those are cheaper. I have a few books in hardcopy and I can't imagine having them without the dust jacket. I only take the dust jacket off when I am reading them and I just think they look ugly without the dust jacket. That's one thing I like about paperbacks, they always have their cover on. It would feel weird to have a hardcopy on my shelf without dust jacket.

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