What Is A Paperback Book?

For many years, most of the books that are released come out in hardcover form before they are released in paperback. Most authors do this in order to increase the profit that they make from the novels, or to increase the awareness of these book.s 

Hardcover books have many advantages and disadvantages and paperback books are the same.

What Is A Paperback Book?

Hardcover books are good for advertising and raising awareness of the novel, whereas paperback books are much more convenient (see also: What Is A Light Novel?)for people to carry around as they are lightweight and smaller. 

What Is A Paperback Book?

A paperback book comes with a paperboard cover. Instead of using stitches or staples to bind these books, they are fixed together using an adhesive. Hardcover books are usually held together using stitches or staples. 

Paperback books have become very popular since the 19th century. Then, they came in the form of a pamphlet, rather than the type of paperback that we know today.

When we refer to paperback books today, they are still very durable, however they are not as durable as hardback covers. 

Hardcover books are usually bound using cardboard and then are further covered with leather or plastic. Hardcover books are a lot heavier and more expensive than paperbacks, and they come with many different designs in comparison to the softcover. 

Differences Between Paperback And Hardcover 

Hardcover books are originally designed to protect the pages in the book, making the book much more durable. Paperback books then became very common in 1935 when the printing technology allowed it and economic reasons meant that it was common.

Now, when you purchase a book, you are offered a paperback and hardcover option.


Hardcovers are a lot more expensive than paperbacks. A hardcover version of the same book will be much more expensive than the same book with a paperback cover. 


Hardcover books are much more durable than paperback books. They will last a lot longer than paperbacks, even if they are used a lot. Hardcover books look a lot better on a bookshelf. 

While hardcover books are much more durable, paperback copies of novels will take up a lot less space on your bookshelf, meaning you will be able to store a larger amount of books on your bookshelf. 


The cover is often not the sole difference between paperbacks and hardcovers. It is very common that the quality of the paper that is used in hardcover books is a lot better than their paperback alternatives.

As the paper is thicker, it is much easier to read the books without damaging the binding of the book. 

Ease Of Use

While hardcover novels are very durable and good to look at, paperback books are actually a lot more convenient. If you are looking to carry your books around and read on the go, then you are much better off reading paperback novels.

When you are carrying books around, you want the book to be as lightweight as possible, and to take up as little space as possible. 


Some readers will only purchase hardcover books as they want to have high-quality books that will last a very long time. You should judge which version of the book to release depending on what your readers will expect. For some people, the paperback option will look too cheap. 

If you want to create a book that people will appreciate, and you think your clientele will be willing to pay, then you should opt for a hardcover book.

What Is A Paperback Book?

Types Of Paperback

You can get three different types of paperback books. These include: 

  • Mass market paperback books
  • B-Format paperbacks 
  • Trade paperbacks 

Mass Market Paperback 

The mass market paperback is a very small book that is not illustrated. In the UK, these books are made with low-quality paper and they are small in both size and weight. 

These books following the hardback version of the book. This started happening in the 1980s and has continued. 

You will find a lot of romance novels (Also check out Best Erotic Romance Novels) or comic books in this format.

B-Format Paperback 

This refers to a medium-sized paperback. This is the size that you will think of when you think of a literary paperback novel. This novel will come with better paper qualities than those of the mass market paperback. 

Trade Paperbacks

The trade paperback book is usually exactly the same as the hardback version of the book, aside from the paperback itself. This is usually printed on high-quality paper and on acid-free paper.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is It Worth Buying Hardcovers? 

Whether you want to choose a hardcover or a paperback book will depend on your preference. You can choose between whether it is worth paying extra for a more durable, fancier book, or if it would be better for you to have a lightweight, paperback book. 

Do Hardcover Books Last Longer Than Paperback?

There are a lot of differences between hardback and paperback books. Hardcover books tend to last longer as they are less likely to break or bend. They are, however, much bulkier and heavier than paperback books.

While hardcovers are much more likely to stay in good condition, you are likely to be able to keep both books for a lifetime anyway.

When Will A Hardcover Book Come Out As A Paperback?

As a general rule of thumb, hardcover books come out around 6 months before the hardcovers. This is usually because hardcover books are sold at a much higher price than the paperback ones, so they will make a larger profit from selling just a few of these books. 

Final Thoughts 

Now that you have read this article, you should have an understanding of a paperback book in comparison to a hardcover. There are lots of advantages and disadvantages of a paperback, and these have been explored in this article.

You should consider things like cost, durability and appeal if you are choosing between a paperback and hardcover book.

Sophie Andrea