Major Differences Between Hardcover and Paperback You Failed to Notice

Filed in Articles by on April 21, 2021

Difference Between Hardcover and Paperback: What’s the difference Between Hardcover and Paperback? That’s one question you probably have asked yourself while trying to get yourself a book.

This article hopes to enlighten booklovers on the benefits and drawbacks of the two book formats which will help them make better buying decisions.

Every reader has personal preferences: some readers prefer hardcover to paperback while others would easily vote paperbacks.


A hardcover book is a book with a hardcover. They are often called hardback books but hardcover and hardback books are the same. Comparing a hardback cover to a paperback cover is difficult as many book printers use many different materials.

Hardcover books usually have a thick heavy card for the cover, between 2.5mm and 3.5mm thick. Some children’s books have a much thicker and much more durable cover, sometimes upwards of 4mm thick. This is good for children’s books for younger readers as they need to be very durable.

Hardcover books are frequently applied to scholastic books, references books, business, bestsellers that have enjoyed financial success.

Other books in the hardcover form are books of collectible worth. Publishers often release a hardcover version of the book to show investment so that they can project a high return of investment.


Paperback book, as its name infers, has a soft card or a thick paper cover over the pages. This type of book cover is less heavy but prone to folding, bending, and wrinkles with use and over time. The majority of printers will use a plain uncoated paper in the region of 240gsm which is roughly 0.5mm thick.

Paperbacks, however, are a cheap and cheerful option. Books that are not of great value or those whose hardcover editions are already there in the market are seen in paperback editions. Non-commercial works are mostly in paperbacks.

Notable Distinctions Between Hardcover and Paperback

1. Hardcover books are characterized with thick and rigid covers made of cardboard while paperbacks, as their name implies, are books with soft, bendable covers. These types of covers are made with thick paper.

2. Hardcover books are durable and longer-lasting than paperbacks. Paperbacks are more readily available and portable because they are lighter and smaller.

3. Hardcover books are made with high-grade materials like paper, ink, and other materials. In contrast, paperback books are made to a lesser degree of quality.

4. The hardcover book’s number of pages is higher due to its larger print. This is not true for the paperback because the book has small page sizes and smaller font sizes.

5. For instance, hardcover books use acid-free paper while paperback books use cheap paper, most likely, newsprint.

6. In terms of lifespan, paperback books can only last for a short time. Meanwhile, hardcover books are designed for very long-term use and storage.

7. Hardcover books are not cheap, especially the limited edition books. Paperbacks are cheaper due to their lower production costs.

8. Hardcover books have several additions; a slip-on jacket, fancy lettering on the spine, and additional pages in the book.

9. Paperbacks are usually held together by glue, but hardcover books are held together by three things; glue, stitches, and sometimes staples.

10. Hardcover books have a long history. Paperbacks came only in the modern period.


Getting hardcover or paperback books are dependent on your preference and how much you read. If you read a lot with hopes to build a personal library hardcovers are better.  But, if you need a quick read at a cheap rate, paperback works is perfect!

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CSN Team.

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