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August 24, 2009

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And Suddenly You Feel Like An Alien

Um. Question. When you buy a hardcover book—or have one foisted upon you (because maybe you’re like me, and you vastly prefer trade paperbacks—do you immediately peel off the jacket and, like, throw it away?

Apparently people do this. Seriously? I cannot even imagine. I’m not sure why, as I obviously don’t like those filmy coverings. But to throw one away? It feels… transgressive!

Is this really a thing that people do?

Update: Wow, I’m not the only one. The battle lines are drawn! It’s dust jacketeers vs. trashbots, and I think the DJs are winning.

Posted August 24, 2009 at 7:59 | Comments (13) | Permasnark
File under: Books, Writing & Such, Briefly Noted


Yep. Mostly, particularly if I am to carry it around.

agreed. occasionally i agonize about thowing it away, but they're not integral to my experience, and usually get in the way.

No way- it feels wrong! I never take it off, and would never throw it away.

Keeping jackets on hardcovers is practically a necessity for me -- it's the only way I can tell at a glance my books from the library's.

I usually take it off if I'm going to carry a book around, but I try not to throw it away; you can stash them on the bookshelf in back of the books. But you end up losing a lot this way anyway. If I leave the jacket on, it usually ends up getting used as a bookmark.

I never, never, never throw a dust jacket away. It ruins the collectable value. (So, of course, does reading the book, but that's a compromise that I'm willing to make.)

I actually will remove the dust jacket and store it safely (no creases!) while I'm carrying a hardcover around, but that's actually to protect the fragile dust jacket more than anything else.

I dig the books without jackets, though. It's a great design move, especially since dust jackets were originally designed to be removed and thrown away. (This is exactly what makes them valuable.)

I take it off and throw it away immediately. Dust jackets are designed for selling books and once that deed is done, they're nothing but a pain in the ass.

I usually remove the dust jacket, but replace it after reading.

though for some reason during infinite summer, I've kept it around.

I also go back and forth on the whole hardcover vs. paperback thing. You'd think I'd have a settled opinion. Nice things about both.

I can’t believe that every single one of you missed the point here. Hello, people! It’s called the DUST JACKET, remember? How are you going to keep dust off your book if you toss the friggin’ thing away, huh?

There’s nothing I hate more than a dusty book, and without a dust jacket the typical tome is a bloody dust magnet. They wouldn’t give you one with every hardcover book if you didn’t need them, now would they? Let’s get with the program, folks.

Posted by: Dusty Reader on August 25, 2009 at 11:06 AM

Remember those CD cases that would just hold the CD and not the jewel cases? I knew plenty of people who threw away the cases (sometimes even the liner art), which sounds like, I dunno, GENOCIDE to someone like me.

I always keep the dust jacket on, no matter how frustrating it gets, because I always use it as a bookmark. Of course, in the process of reading, the dust jacket will become bent or creased or slightly torn brushing against my knee after a particularly malicious clawed swipe from an unhappy cat - and then I regret not having taken it off.

Interesting though - The Observer reports that hardcovers sans jackets are the new trend.

Wow, you are all crazy alien people, except Peter and Gavin and of course Dusty Reader. If my dust cover is getting really beaten up, I put it away while I'm taking it around town, but no, of course I don't throw it away. Just thinking about it is giving a semi-religious cringe of sacrilege and the creeps. I have a soft spot for artists and graphic designers. I grew up with religious books that had beautifully designed dust covers, real works of art. There is often nice photography or typography on a dust cover. The author's photograph is there! The publisher's summary is there, making it easy to let other people have the same browsing experience in my room that I did in the store. Imperfect representation of the book inside that the dust jacket text is, it is the chosen official representation, and I like knowing what they settled on even if I end up disagreeing. Getting rid of it would be throwing away information from my library. And I *don't* use it as a bookmark. That's what bookmarks are for! I have so many of those, I like to stick to them.

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