Difference Between Hardcover And Paperback

Difference Between Hardcover And Paperback

Confused to Choose between Hardcover and Paperback? Well, you are at the right place to decide, since I have formulated an article on what should you choose.

Every reader do gets confused about this question at some point of time in their life and for avid readers, it is the most difficult choices as they want their books be safe for years even after reading due to the love for their books. Even though most of us already think that hardcover is better than paperback, there are some disadvantages too.

This confusion just doesn’t lies to you but I too seem confused about this. At the start, I would only pick paperback due to money constraints but with time, I started buying hardcovers too. After buying and reading both covers, I can give you a lot more idea and their pros and cons which I have explained further below.

You may have noticed that libraries have hardcovers rather than paperbacks because it acts as a protective layer and a dust-free jacket that protects them from dust. In this article you will learn the differences between them, their benefits and a lot more which will help clear a lot of your doubts.

What Is Hardcover?


A hefty protective cover surrounds a hardcover (or hardback) book. Over the main cover, hardcovers frequently include a dust jacket. Publishers create a hardcover to safeguard a book throughout time.

Hardcover book paper, like the cover, is generally quite sturdy and designed to endure a long time. As a result, many collector’s editions are hardcovers. Along with collector versions, reference books are also available in hardcover.

What Is Paperback?


The covers of paperback books are constructed of thin paper or cardboard. The pages are held together using glue. Paperback books are far less expensive to produce than hardback books.

Paperbacks are frequently printed in large quantities by publishers. This mass-production edition generally follows the book’s hardcover release, and the publisher will advertise it to a broader audience. Paperbacks are lighter and a better alternative for travelers because of the lower cost of manufacture.

Difference Between Hardcover And Paperwork

• They are expensive.• They are cheaper.
• Their print quality is very good.• Their print quality is bad compared to hardcover.
• They last long due to its build quality.• They get wrinkles and get damaged after a short time.
• These are heavyweight thus not a good option to carry while traveling.• They are lightweight and can be carried comfortably while traveling.
• These have larger dimensions.• These have a shorter dimension.
• Hardcover books have thick and rigid book covers.• Paperback books have thin covers as compared to hardcover.
• Not easy to carry.• These are flexible and are easy to carry.

What You Should Buy? Hardcover or Paperback

  1. Buy Paperback to Save Money: Everyone knows that paperback is a cheaper option and budget-friendly to all the readers out there. As its costs compared to hardcover are cheaper.
  2. Choose Paperback To Read While Traveling:- Readers who spend most of their time reading should buy paperback because it’s lightweight and comfortable. The paperback is a better option for daily purposes because of its weight and floppiness.
  3. Choose a Hardcover To Preserve For long Time– A hardcover is long-lasting than a paperback. It is durable and remains strong even after daily use. Paperbacks are easier to get torn, wrinkled and the glue of the spine may weaken with time and pages will detach.
  4. Choose Hardcover to Gift Someone– If you are going to gift it to someone, you should try hardcover as it looks nicer than paperbacks. They feel more premium and satisfying to open as a gift. And it will stay for long and your loved ones will appreciate choosing a better version.
  5. Buy Paperback For The Ease of Holding– Due to its smaller size and lightweight, you can hold them easily without any problem. You can hold it with one hand and even if you are lying on the bed or anywhere, you can read it easily due to its comfort.
  6. Choose Hardcover If You Want The Book to Lay Flat– If you want the book to lay flat without breaking its spine and stay away from wrinkles, then hardcover is a much better option. Some paperback can’t be laid flat. And so they make reading difficult.
  7. Buy Hardcover To Buy It Sooner After Publishing– If you want to buy it immediately after its release, you should go for hardcover because when the book is released, it will be released as a hardcover and not paperback.
  8. Choose Hardcover For Quality– If you want to keep the book for a longer time, you should prefer hardcover and more strong reason to buy it over paperback because of its paper quality and print quality is far better than a paperback.

Advantages Of Hardcover Over Paperback

  1. Page don’t get damaged easily because of the good quality used in hardcovers.
  2. They are more durable than paperbacks as paperbacks get torn easily.
  3. If you want to gift someone then hardcover books are a better option than paperback books.
  4. Its print quality and paper quality is better than that of a paperback and has better fonts.
  5. These protect books more than paperback.

Advantages Of Paperback Over Hardcover

  1. They are cheaper to buy than hardcovers.
  2. Very lightweight and are easier to carry.
  3. They are rugged. A paperback falling on its edge, opposite of its spine. It just bends and perhaps gets a crease. But if hardcover falls it will damage its edges as well as corners.

Why Are Hardcover Books So Expensive?

Hardcover books are expensive because they are the first to publish and are published first because they can drive a higher price point. Also, they are more expensive due to the expensive raw materials used.

The cover in these books is a harder board made to protect the book for the longer term. Due to its better quality of pages and printing, the cost is more than a paperback. If you are buying for long-term purposes, you should go for hardcovers.


Hardcover and Paperback books do create confusion in our minds but if you have read the article above carefully, most of those must be cleared by now.

I prefer choosing paperbacks most of the times depending on the genre of the books and their cost. I have bought several hardcovers over the years only of non-fiction genre.

By gaining and understanding about both of them, I have shared my insights about hardcover and paperbacks above which I hope will help you.

If you liked my insights over this above article, do have a look at my other articles too shared below:

Frequently Asked Questions

Do Hardcover And Paperback Have Different ISBN?

An ISBN is assigned to a single edition whether it is published in Hardcover, Paperback or ebook.

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