Books have been published for thousands of years and on thousands of different subjects. Books are separated into sections, or parts, to make reading and finding the information you are seeking easier to find.


The cover of a book is the first thing the reader will see and is often one of the things that entices a reader to read a certain book, despite the common phrase "never judge a book by its cover." A book cover also serves as a protective binding for the pages of the book. On the cover you will often find the title and author of the book you are reading. Covers are found in both fiction and nonfiction books.

Title Page

A title page gives important information about the book itself. On a title page you will likely find the title, author, location the book was published, and the name and year of the publishing company. Title pages are found in both fiction and nonfiction books.

Dedication Page

A dedication page is optional and written if the author of the book wants to dedicate the book to a particular person or persons. Books are often dedicated to the people who were most influential in the writing or publishing process. While both nonfiction and fictional books can have dedication pages, they are most often found in fictional genres.

Table of Contents

The table of contents or chapter section in a book tells the parts or documents in the book in the order in which they appear. The table of contents page often lists the page on which a section or chapter begins, as well as the section title. In fiction genres, this is most often seen as a "chapter" section and in nonfiction as a "table of contents."

Foreword or Preface

While foreword and preface are not always entirely interchangeable, they are often synonymous with each other. Both are found at the beginning of a book or other piece of literature, but a foreword is not always written by the author. A preface, on the other hand, is generally written by the author and gives some insight into how the book idea started. A foreword is normally found in nonfiction text, while a preface is found in fiction.


The body of the book is the "meat" of the selection. This is where the story is told or the content is imparted to the reader. This is the longest section of any book, it is ordered sequentially and pages are often numbered for easy reference. This section is found in both fiction and nonfiction.


A glossary is an alphabetical list of content specific terms used in the book and their meanings. This section is often found only in nonfiction text; most times glossaries are found in textbooks and reference material.


An index is a list of words or phrases used in the book and where they can be found in the content. Indexes are often found in the back of a book and can include names of people, places and events. An index is often found in nonfictional reference material.