Question: Why don’t you keep the book jackets on books?

Answer: (provided by Joseph Watson) We understand and agree that some book jackets are desirable, but to be pragmatic, especially in these times of tight budgets, we do not feel like we can justify the extra time and expense required to retain the jackets permanently. The old fashioned library answer might be “Book jackets are used by the publisher to sell the book in a book store setting and they are not necessary in an academic research setting where most people consult the library catalog to find books rather than browsing the shelves.” and to a great extent this is still true. In fact, we recently enhanced the catalog so it is now possible to view book covers, dust jackets, author biographies, table of contents, and sometimes even reviews for most newly published books. Dust jackets stay with the book until it is removed from the New Books shelf and anyone borrowing the book at that point is welcome to keep the jacket. Discarded jackets are left for reuse on a bulletin board near LIB140… they’re great for making collages or decorating dorm rooms.

2 thoughts on “Question: Why don’t you keep the book jackets on books?

  1. Brenda

    I’m glad to have book jacket info in midcat, but in working with students I find that midcat serves to point them to some titles and get them to the right place(s) in the stacks. From there they find additional titles by browsing. The summaries provided by the jacket can help users select a book. This may not be essential, but it is worthwhile, if we can find the money sometime in the future. It would be nice to know the cost per book. Does blackwells offer an option to do some processing, such as putting the plastic covers on the books before sending?

  2. Joseph

    The last time I checked in 2006 Blackwell’s charged $1.50 per book to cover the jacket in Mylar. I assume, after start up costs, we could do it for less in-house since previous cost analysis for shelf ready materials showed our in-house cost was less than BNA.


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