What Is a Dust Jacket on a Book? 3 Pro and Cons!

A dust jacket is often associated with hardcover books. Its uses are not limited to hardcover books, however. Some perfect bound books come with one. What is a dust jacket on a book? Read on to find out more.

What Is It?

What Is a Dust Jacket on a Book
source: en.wikipedia.org

It is a printed paper overlay that acts like a “jacket” for a book. A dust jacket wraps around the cover of a book, keeping dust off from its cover, among other things.

A dust jacket is held in place by flaps that fold around the cover of a book. It is an optional accessory and isn’t attached to the book permanently. You can remove and reattach a jacket to a book quite easily.

What Is the Purpose of a Dust Jacket?

Now you know the answer to the question “What is a dust jacket on a book?”. Next, let’s talk about book dust jacket purpose. A dust jacket’s first and foremost purpose is to keep dust off the cover of a book.

That’s not the only thing the jacket can do, of course. A dust jacket protects a book from damaging spills, scuffs, as well as grime.

Oftentimes, a dust jacket has a matte or gloss laminate on it, which increases its stain resistance and durability. The jacket also provides additional panels on which information about the book can be printed. It can be the author’s profile, a synopsis, reviews, or endorsements, for example.

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The Pros of a Dust Jacket

dusk jacket

  • A dusk jacket increases the perceived value of a book that it covers. Note that the difference in the perceived value can be substantial. For example, a book without a jacket is sold in the $9.99-$12.99 range. On the other hand, a book with a jacket can cost $17.99.
  • Bookstores and libraries like dust jackets. How could they not? A dusk jacket protects a book, not just from dust but also spills, scuffs, and grime. A jacket helps to increase the durability of a book.
  • A jacket adds more space for marketing materials. It can contain information related to the book, such as the author’s profile, a synopsis of the book, a snippet of reviews, and others.

The Cons of a Dust Jacket

  • While a dust jacket does increase the perceived value of a book, it increases the printing cost of the book. If you are a self-publishing author, keep an eye on the cost as it can add up real quick.
  • From the readers’ perspective, dust jackets can be annoying as they just get in the way. Not to mention they fall off and rip, too. When a dust jacket is all wrinkled, it can be difficult to keep on the book. On top of these, dust can still cover a book even with a jacket attached to it.

What is a dust jacket on a book? It is a printer paper overlay that serves as a “jacket” for a book, keeping dust off from its cover. It is an accessory that can increase the perceived value of a book and is liked by bookstores and libraries. However, It also increases the printing cost and can be annoying for the reader.

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