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Choosing Your Binding Style

February 02, 2021 (Last Updated May 25, 2023)

Marcy G.

When you start the process of self-publishing and printing your book, there are a lot of decisions to make. It can be overwhelming at first, but we recommend starting with this question first: What type of binding should my book be?

When you go to place an order, the first field that must be filled out is your binding type. Luckily, 48 Hour Books can help narrow down this decision for you.  Let’s go through each type of bookbinding to find what is best for you and your book based on your needs, genre, functionality, and more.


Perfect Binding (paperback):

Paperback books continue to be the most popular binding option at 48 Hour Books.  Paperback books are great quality and cost less than other binding options, can accommodate smaller page counts, and only take two business days to print.

Some genres that traditionally come in paperback are fiction books, such as fantasy and sci-fi, mysteries and thrillers, classics, comic books and graphic novels, romance novels, short stories, and many more. Nonfiction books like memoirs, biographies, and historical nonfiction also come in paperback, as well as hardcover.

Another benefit to printing paperback books is that you can easily customize them and make them your own through different cover options. Want your book to stand out on the shelf? Consider adding Diamond 3D printing to your book cover.

*We recommend that your page count be at least 16 pages when printing a paperback book.


Case Binding (hardcover):

Paperback books are certainly versatile, but at 48 Hour Books, so are hardcover books! Add a dust jacket for that professional, bookstore quality or choose from special cover options such as cloth or leather.  If you do choose a cloth or leather cover, you may want to add foil stamping on your book cover for the title and graphics.

Case binding is a great option for coffee table books, family histories, special editions, and more. Having a hard time deciding between paperback and hardcover? With our split-binding option, you don’t have to choose. You can add hardcover books to any paperback order. 

*We recommend that your page count be at least 40 pages when printing a hardcover book.


Spiral Coil Binding:             

Our Spiral coil binding is bound with a plastic coil, which comes in an assortment of colors to compliment your book cover. When choosing a binding type, consider functionality. Spiral bound books lay flat, so if you are printing a workbook, cookbook, coloring book, devotional, journal, or reference book, spiral coil binding might be the best fit for your book.


Saddle Stitched Binding:         

Saddle stich binding is stapled, making it the perfect binding option for handouts, pamphlets, and programs. This is also a popular option for children’s books that have low page counts.  


Still need help deciding? We also recommend looking at your own bookshelf to see what books you like to get inspired!  As always, we’re here to help. View our cover options up close by ordering our free Ultimate Guide sample book.

Have you found your favorite bookbinding style? Select your binding option and see your book come to life when you partner with 48 Hour Books.


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Sign up for the 48 Hour Books newsletter to learn how to self-publish your book — and get it printed faster with us than anywhere else.


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