There could be lots of topics on a book, such as the form/style, the author. In contrast to which, there could also be another topic, namely, the content.

Bạn đang xem: The content of a book

An answered khổng lồ a post (
X80PJ) says

"contents" is grammatically correct but only if used for the things that are inside a box, bag, room etc OR the things that are written in a book, letter etc. This will be considered as plural, countable.

where she uses "contents" to refer khổng lồ the things that are written in a book, I suppose "things" is interchangeable khổng lồ "ideas".

Another post gives this explanation

The singular form nội dung can only be used khổng lồ refer khổng lồ something abstract or not easily dividable into parts.

Nevertheless, Cambridge Dictionary clearly defines the word "content" as < S or U > with the meaning "the ideas that are contained in a piece of writing, a speech, or a film"

I guess the part about book in that quote is incorrect. Is my understanding right?

Improve this question
edited Mar 3, 2020 at 14:40
asked Feb 29, 2020 at 5:30

3,04977 gold badges4444 silver badges111111 bronze badges
địa chỉ cửa hàng a phản hồi |

1 Answer 1

Sorted by: Reset to mặc định
Highest score (default) Date modified (newest first) Date created (oldest first)
Both "contents" and "content" can be used khổng lồ refer lớn things in a book, etc, but they mean slightly different things:

"contents" means separable pieces that are put together to hóa trang the book. This may include chapters, appendices, figures, references, etc. These are often the things listed in a "table of contents" at the beginning of a book. The countable size "contents" is used here because they are separable pieces, which can therefore be counted as individual items.

(Note, "contents" doesn"t usually refer khổng lồ ideas, but rather khổng lồ structural/organizational parts of the book (chapters, etc))

"content" means the representation of the ideas contained in the book, or the overall text of the work, taken as a whole. It is uncountable because it is not separable into individual pieces (without changing the nature of the pieces), và only makes sense as a single whole.

So you might say:

The book"s contents included two chapters about penguins.


The book"s content was mostly about motorcycle maintenance (despite some references khổng lồ penguins)

What Goes In The “Front Matter”?

Front matter comes before your book’s content and introduces the reader to lớn your book. It’s made up of several components, many of which your book does not need.

Let’s look at each component to see which ones you should include.

Half Title Page

This is the first page of your book a reader sees. It has your book title with no subtitle or byline.


Why you might need it: It’s a customary part of every book.

Do most books need it: Yes, pretty much. All books have it, yours might look weird without it.

Series Title Page

If you’ve published other books, the second page is where you can menu them by title. If you need to include the subtitle, you can, but it’s not necessary.

Typically this page begins with: “Also by …”

Why you might need it: to refer readers khổng lồ your previous books.

Do most books need it: Only if you’ve published other books, and want to promote them.


Also known as endorsements, blurbs are quotes from notable people saying something positive about you or your book. Blurbs can also be included in the cover design, but in the front matter, they typically go in a section called “Advance Praise.”


Why you might need it: Testimonials are a great way khổng lồ “credential” a book (and more importantly in many cases, an author) & help readers see that the book is relevant khổng lồ them.

Xem thêm: Cách dùng index trong excel, cách sử dụng hàm index và match kết hợp

Most of all, testimonials should convince a potential reader khổng lồ buy the book.

In terms of who khổng lồ ask: it’s better not khổng lồ have testimonials than to have bad ones or ones from unknown sources. If you include a testimonial, the reader should recognize the name.

For more guidance on getting good blurbs, check out the guide we wrote on book blurbs.

Do most books need it: No—testimonials are nice khổng lồ have, not a necessity.


An illustration on the left (or verso) side of the page facing the title page on the right side (or recto). Originally, the frontispiece (from the French word frontispice) was purely decorative, using architectural elements such as columns & pediments, và went on the title page.

Over time, the frontispiece moved lớn the verso page và evolved to lớn be more illustrative & informative, giving readers a clue to lớn a book’s themes or the time period in which it was written. Some books, including biographies, used a portrait of the author as the frontispiece.

Why you might need it: If you want your book to lớn look like an old book. A frontispiece is common in classic books, but not today’s books.

Do most books need it: No.

Title Page

This page has your title, subtitle, and byline.


Why you might need it: Same as before—this is a customary part of every book.

Do most books need it: Yes, all books do.

Here’s an example:

They might also include ordering information và trademark notices for their name or logo.

Some parts of this book have been fictionalized in varying degrees, for various purposes.

This book is not intended as a substitute for the medical advice of physicians.

The information in this book is meant to lớn supplement, not replace, proper football training.