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Book Jackets Are Bad And You Can't Convince Me Otherwise

I am only speaking the truth.

Posted on April 19, 2018, at 12:18 p.m. ET

This story begins last night.


It begins as most of my nights do: hanging out at home, thinking about my books, feeling restless about my bookshelf.


And, well...


I slipped each book from its jacket, feeling more energized each time. It was so freeing, so flagrant. And readers...


I fully expected to be dragged, but here's the thing: THE PEOPLE LOVED IT, TOO.


One after another, the support slid into my DMs.


Don't get me wrong, I've got a lot of love for book covers and the designers who create them. But the jacket — it's so bulky. So extra. Always slipping and sliding.


(Honestly, if I really had my druthers, I'd want all paperbacks — but that is an argument for another day.)

Anyway, the whole thing got me thinking: Are all of the dust jacket haters being shamed into silence??

i want to do a ted talk about how much i hate hardcover books, specifically the dust jackets that come with them

@Softwarmground: I'd watch.

i hate book dust jackets and love the colored fabric and gilt letters underneath. you?

Girl, SAME!

Now, to answer some questions:

1. I tossed *most* of the covers, before thanking them as Marie Kondo taught me. I saved some faves to frame.

2. No, I'm not worried about book upkeep, because, as Michelle Dean wrote in a wonderful anti–dust jacket essay in Flavorwire: "Dust happens, it’s a fact of life, no crappy piece of paper can stand in its way, the end."

3. No, I'm not worried about them looking a mess. Nothing makes me happier than a well-worn book. (And, anyway, my cats loved eating the corners of dust jackets whenever they were mad at me for something.)

And for what it's worth: I'm obsessed with how the jacketless books look on the shelf.


That's all. Dust jackets are bad. Thank you for your time.

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.