Dashiell Hammett’s “The Maltese Falcon.” “Gone Girl” by Gillian Flynn. “And Then There Were None” by none other than Agatha Christie, herself. All page-turners in their own right, but there is one mystery that remains unsolved in the great halls of literature: why are hardcover books printed first?

For centuries, books have grown to become one of – if not the – most popular forms of entertainment, introspection, knowledge, and so much more.

Thanks to the technological advances of the last few decades, book production, too, has evolved from the painstakingly meticulous piecing together of leather binding and pagination to the advent of digital files that can be uploaded, downloaded, read, reissued, and shared via electronic devices.

And yet so many people are still curious about why hardcover books are printed first and pushed out to bookshops and big box store shelves before their paperback counterparts, even hardcover books are usually more expensive.

Hardcover books take longer to print than paperbacks and tend to hold up better. But it’s because of the resulting durability that hardcover books remain popular today, despite a higher price tag. The appearance and tactile nature of hardcover books make them appealing to avid readers and collectors, and because they can be printed relatively inexpensively and sold at a higher price point – their release date comes first.

While Gasch Printing produces a lot of hardcover books (we specialize in small runs of less than 500 copies), our primary specialty is providing quick and accurate turnaround on perfect-bound (a.k.a. paperback, a.k.a. softcover) projects.

Not only are softcover books more economical, from assembly to shipping, but they are also professionally regarded and incredibly versatile, with applications spanning trade paperbacks to graphic novels to association handbooks and beyond.

At Gasch, our team uses both EVA and PUR glue in our paperback binding process, with the latter offering a more flexible and durable binding with coated sheets. We also offer three types of lamination to choose from—gloss, matte, and soft-touch—to give your perfect bound book the ideal look and feel.

Our key differentiator is quantity, and we can deliver top-notch print runs of 50 to 1500 softcover books in a snap with state-of-the-art equipment and exemplary attention to detail. Reach out to us today to learn more.