Common Abbreviations
AEG All Edges Gilt
ARC Advance Reader's Copy. A paperback version released before the trade edition for publicity. These may have no artwork.
BCE Book Club Edition.  Some have less expensive bindings, materials, or inferior print quality, are often smaller and are therefore not as collectible - but are more likely to be found in mint condition.  Some are equal in quality to trade editions, and many of this type have cover art not found in other editions.  Some are deluxe editions and highly collectable (Easton Press, Folio).
BOMC book of the month club
DJ / DW Dust Jacket or Dust Wrapper.  Protective paper, sometimes glossy or even laminated, that is wrapped around a book cover.  Many are highly decorative and/or add value to the book.
Ed. Edition
Ex-lib Formerly owned by a lending library
FEP / FFEP / RFEP Free Endpaper (or flyleaf) / Front Free Endpaper / Rear Free Endpaper.  Blank or decorative pages added by the book binder.
HC / HB Hardback or hardcover
ISBN International Standard Book Number - books printed by major publishers after about 1970 will have one.  Unique ten digit number which unmistakably identifies publisher, date, and edition.
MMPB Mass Market Paperback, smaller and less expensive than a trade paperback
OOP Out of print
PB Paperback
PBO Paperback Original.  Indicates a first edition - not previously released in hardcover.
PO or P/O Previous Owner
QPB or QPBC Quality Paperback Book Club
SC or SLC Slipcase;  sometimes used to mean soft cover, check the context of the usage
SP Sticker pull.  Discoloration, color or paper loss, or any damage incurred in the process of removing a label.
SFBC Science Fiction Book Club
TP Title Page.
TPB Trade paperback.  Larger and sturdier than a standard paperback.
VOL / VOLS Volume / Volumes.
Anatomy of a Book
Binding Material used as a protective cover for a book.
Boards the front and back covers of a hard bound book
Colophon the last page of a book, stating the printing and type information. Some publishers put copyright information there.
Edges The three unbound sides of the text block:  the top (or head), the bottom (or foot) and the fore edge.
Endpapers Pages added by the binder which become the FEP/REP and pastedowns.
Endpaper Refers to the paper affixed to the boards when singular.  Also called the pastedown.
Fore-edge The front edge of the book; the last part you see before you open it
Gutter A flexible trough between a board and the spine of a hard cover binding which allows movement at the hinge
Half Title Page Sometimes found before the title page, with only the title of the book printed on it.
Headband A strip of cloth affixed to bound signatures for decoration or reinforcement.
Hinge Where a hardcover binding meets the endpapers inside the book
Gilt, Gilded, Foil Metallic decoration most commonly used for spine or cover art, or a thin layer of gold leaf covering text block edges
Leaves Pages
Mull Cloth used to reinforce the hinges, pasted onto the body of the book, hidden by the spine and end papers
Number Line Indicates impression.  Commonly found on the copyright page.  Some books will have none, some publishers use alphabet letters or other signs rather than numbers, or a combination.
Obverse The front surface.
Pastedown A term applied to paper pasted to a cover or slipcase, including endpapers and decorative labels.
Plate An added page containing art or extra information
Recto The right hand side - opposite of Verso
Signature A section of the text block which was folded and sewn.
Slipcase A protective and often decorative box made to contain a book or set of books
Text Block All the pages of the book
Tipped-In An item pasted down by one edge which may be expanded or removed, such as a map or photo.
Top Stain The top edge of the text block has been colored for decorative purposes.  Sometimes all the text block edges are stained a solid color or speckled.
Verso The back of a page;  the left side
Watermark Faint background design sometimes found in high quality paper
Wraps / Wrappers paperback or softcover binding