A hardcover or hardback book is one bound with rigid protective covers (typically of cardboard covered with cloth, heavy paper, or sometimes leather). It has a flexible, sewn spine which allows the book to lie flat on a surface when opened. Following the ISBN sequence numbers, books of this type may be identified by the abbreviation “hbk” or “HC”.
Hardcover books are often printed on acid-free paper, and they are much more durable than paperbacks, which have flexible, easily damaged paper covers. Hardcover books are marginally more costly to manufacture.
If brisk sales are anticipated, an edition of a book is typically released first in hardcover. Except for very inexpensive mass-market paperbacks, hardcovers typically cost more than paperbacks.
Hardcovers are often protected by artistic dust jackets, but a “jacketless” alternative is becoming increasingly popular: these “case-bound” books have an image printed on the binding material, which is visible when the book is closed.
The purpose of a hardcover book is to protect the pages and spine of the book. It also makes the book more durable so that it can last longer.
Hardcover books are important for a number of reasons. First, they are generally seen as being of higher quality than paperback books. This is because hardcover books are usually printed on better paper and have better binding. Hardcover books also tend to be more durable than paperbacks, so they can last longer.
Another reason hardcover books are important is because they are often seen as more collectible than paperbacks. Hardcover books can be signed by the author and are often more expensive than paperbacks. This makes them more desirable to collectors.
Finally, hardcover books often have better resale value than paperbacks. This is because they are seen as being of higher quality and because they are more collectible. For these reasons, hardcover books are an important part of the book industry.