Anatomy of a Book Interior

Ever wonder what the bits and pieces of a well organized book are called? The following elements make up the anatomy of a published book though they may not always be in the order presented here.

End Papers

These are the blank pages (perhaps with images) you find at the beginning and end of a book. They function to fill out the Signatures.  Paperbacks may not have End Papers. Sometimes End Papers are referred to as Leaves.

Half Title Page

The book title appears on this page.

Other Books by the Author Page

This list may appear on the opposite side of the Half Title page, or on its own page following the Half Title page.

Title Page

The book title and the names of the author(s) and the publisher are found here. On the back side of this page you'll find the copyright notice, the ISBN (the International Standard Book Number) and printing numbers, the publisher’s address, the year the book was published, the Library of Congress Catalogue information, and more.

Dedication Page

This element allows the author(s) to dedicate the book to someone or something.


The author(s) often have plenty of assistance getting their book published. This page thanks people who have been helpful in some way: perhaps a writing instructor, the editor at the publishing house, the author’s agent, a supportive spouse, etc.

Table of Contents

Also known as the TOC, the Table of Contents lists the individual chapters  and the page where each begins. It’s usually found in nonfiction books.

List of Charts, Diagrams, Photos or Illustrations

If included, this might follow the TOC to further detail the book’s contents.


The Foreword is written by someone other than the book’s author(s) and provides insight not readily seen in the authors content.


Written by the author(s), the Preface contains important information relating to the book topic. Sometimes  referred to as Author's Note.

Front Matter

All the pages up to this point are called the Front Matter. The page numbering is done in Roman numerals or some other system that differs from the Body pagination.


The author gives the reader more details about the book in this optional section. In trade nonfiction books, the Introduction may be an informal “Dear Reader” letter getting the reader excited about the information presented, inviting the reader inside the book and giving an overview of the book’s contents. The pagination starts here.

Body or Chapters

This refers to the text of the book, which is usually broken down into chronologically numbered and named elements called Chapters.

In nonfiction books each chapter may be divided into sub-titled segments which may be included in the TOC.

In fiction, the chapters might contain segments called Scenes; these are separated by blank space within the text. They are usually not referenced in the TOC.

In both fiction and nonfiction, chapters might be grouped together and labeled as Part 1, Part 2, etc.

Back Matter

All the pages appearing after the body of the book are called the Back Matter and included in the pagination of the Book Body.


Any additional information for the reader to know after having read the book.


Nonfiction books may have one or more Appendix listing recommended books, websites, organizations, or other resources relating to the book topic.

Fiction only occasionally has an Appendix.


Usually found in nonfiction books, this section lists vocabulary words and their definitions as they relate to the book’s subject matter.


Lists the references used in writing the book.


Usually in nonfiction books, the Index is an alphabetical list of significant terms found in the text and the pages they appear on, helpful to someone seeking specific information in the book.

Author Biography

A sentence, paragraph or even a page about the author(s).