Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Dust Covers

Basically I'm going to do a Linda Richman here and throw out a topic for you to "talk amongst yourselves." No, I'm not feeling veklempt, but I am feeling like this blog is getting bogged down with the Auel book and it needs a little airing out...

So the topic du jour is dust covers. I threw away my dust cover to Plains of Passage as I usually do with all of my dust covers (not to worry, if you lend me a book I'll stick the dust cover in a drawer, not the trash). I don't know if I'm hung up on some cheesy preconception of what a library should be or what, but I like the look of the book binding on my shelf. It's not often that I can afford a hard cover as it is, but when I do spend the bucks, I don't like having that glossy wrapping tacking up the place.

And it's not just aesthetics. If you don't remove them, they're constantly slipping off (horrible in the bathtub), getting lost, and if you've been trying to use their flaps as bookmarks, they don't work for thick books. Plus, they're usually covered with the usual inane crap from publishers; hyperbolic reviews, grandiose sentiments about the book's cultural significance, and summaries that don't effectively sum up the plot at all.

But a word of caution is perhaps needed here. If anyone caught the Antiques Roadshow when they went to St. John's, dust covers could make your book valuable. One guy had a Winnie The Pooh from way back when and it was worth in the thousands merely because he had kept the dust cover. So maybe you should hold onto them. Though if it's the latest from Dean Koontz, I wouldn't be holding my breath for a profit.



John Mutford said...

This sums up the crap on dust covers.

Barbara Bruederlin said...

I'm with you on showing off those expensive hard covers. I have even been known to buy vintage hard cover books at library sales and place them in pretentious little stacks on desks and such.

I seem to visit your site quite a bit, as I enjoy your take on all things literary. Any objections to me putting you on my blogroll?