TA HELL WITH A MASS MARKET (my opinion as a reader on why I love Trade Paperbacks)

I have a ton of books.

I don’t know how much they actually weigh, but me and the Missus have a book buying problem. Actually, the phraseology on that is wrong. We have NO problem buying books. Ignore the fact that my TBR pile numbers near 100. Ignore also the fact that there are easily 20 current releases I have NOT purchased simply because I know when I do I will immediately read them thus pushing my TBR pile even further int he background. (Yes, I’m looking at you COLD DAYS by Jim Butcher. Fuck you, don’t make me feel guilty for not bathing in your sweet sweet cotton-candy scented literature. I’ll get to you. I will. I PROMISE. It is inevitable.)

Where was I?

Oh yeah, books.

Here is a pic of our new, grown folks books shelves and our library at the house.

ALL the books on the left two shelves are mine.

ALL the books on the left two shelves are mine.


So earlier I was thinking about books. The physical form of the book. I decided that I am totally over mass market paperbacks. I much prefer the size of a trade paperback.

Mass market paperbacks are now the cats of the publishing world in my opinion.

Now I’ll still buy a mass market, hell I bought one last night (SHARP by my good friend Alex Hughes). But if I can, I’m buying trades from now on.

Book four of the Deacon Chalk series will be trade paperback size.

My double anthology of sword and sorcery stories that I edited for Seventh Star press will be trade paperback size.

I’m actually going to push for any book released by me to be automatically in trade paperback size. I may not get it for everything, but it’s what I want.

They are easier to hold, easier to read, and easier to shelve. They are narrower, so you can fit more on a shelf, and with a mass market, you lose the 3-4 inch difference in dead space between the top of the book and the bottom of the shelf above it.

This post has no real merit. It was just a musing I thought I would indulge because, hey, fuck it, it’s my internet too.

So what’s your choice or opinion on this hot-button issue?



  1. I really like trades better… but I’m a stickler for matchy-matchy… mixing sizes mid series makes me CRAZY! I’m one of those who will rebuy an entire series (if the pubs make it available) to keep the sizes the same (am currently doing that for J R Ward books)

  2. James, I understand your issue with Mass Market. I stated reading the Dresden Files before the Mass Market change and boy was I not happy with the new size compared to the shorter wider trades and $2.00 price raise at the time, I believe the change hit with book 10 or 11, I can not recall but anyway Mass Markets are difficult to hold while reading. I ended up writing off phyical books all together because nothing pissed me off more then tring to find a paperback on the shelf that wasn’t warped, bent, or creased in some way. BTW, CIRCUS OF BLOOD and BLOOD AND MAGICK, kick ass sir, kick ass. Any info on book 4 coming soon?

    • I appreciate it 🙂

      Book 4 should hit by end of this year and my plan is a Deacon short fiction collection titled SPECIAL FEATURES to hit around August.

      Thanks for all the support!!!!!

  3. That photo looks like my bedroom and my spare room/library. So glad to see that I am not the only one with a book buying problem. In regards to book size trade is easier to read but mass is cheaper so its whatever I feel like buying. Overall, ebooks are best because I can carry more with me.
    Side note toJennifer; be glad you’re not me. I’ve got five different sizes of books and that’s not counting the hardcover sizes.

  4. I much prefer the Trade Paperbacks myself and have for some time, I try to get them whenever I can. I’ve really become a fan of the SSP authors and am so glad they use that size for their books. I’m looking really forward to the Sword and Sorcery Anthologies, glad you guys decided to do that project!

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