booked up


  1. a handwritten or printed work of fiction or nonfiction, usually on sheets of paper fastened or bound together within covers.
  2. a work of fiction or nonfiction in an electronic format: Your child can listen to or read the book online.See also e-book(def 1).
  3. a number of sheets of blank or ruled paper bound together for writing, recording business transactions, etc.
  4. a division of a literary work, especially one of the larger divisions.
  5. the Book, the Bible.
  6. Music. the text or libretto of an opera, operetta, or musical.
  7. books. book of account.
  8. Jazz. the total repertoire of a band.
  9. a script or story for a play.
  10. a record of bets, as on a horse race.
  11. Cards. the number of basic tricks or cards that must be taken before any trick or card counts in the score.
  12. a set or packet of tickets, checks, stamps, matches, etc., bound together like a book.
  13. anything that serves for the recording of facts or events: The petrified tree was a book of Nature.
  14. Sports. a collection of facts and information about the usual playing habits, weaknesses, methods, etc., of an opposing team or player, especially in baseball: The White Sox book on Mickey Mantle cautioned pitchers to keep the ball fast and high.
  15. Stock Exchange.
    1. the customers served by each registered representative in a brokerage house.
    2. a loose-leaf binder kept by a specialist to record orders to buy and sell stock at specified prices.
  16. a pile or package of leaves, as of tobacco.
  17. Mineralogy. a thick block or crystal of mica.
  18. a magazine: used especially in magazine publishing.
  19. book value.
  20. Slang. bookmaker(def 1).
  21. the book,
    1. a set of rules, conventions, or standards: The solution was not according to the book but it served the purpose.
    2. the telephone book: I’ve looked him up, but he’s not in the book.

verb (used with object)

  1. to enter in a book or list; record; register.
  2. to reserve or make a reservation for (a hotel room, passage on a ship, etc.): We booked a table at our favorite restaurant.
  3. to register or list (a person) for a place, transportation, appointment, etc.: The travel agent booked us for next week’s cruise.
  4. to engage for one or more performances.
  5. to enter an official charge against (an arrested suspect) on a police register.
  6. to act as a bookmaker for (a bettor, bet, or sum of money): The Philadelphia syndicate books 25 million dollars a year on horse racing.

verb (used without object)

  1. to register one’s name.
  2. to engage a place, services, etc.
  3. Slang.
    1. to study hard, as a student before an exam: He left the party early to book.
    2. to leave; depart: I’m bored with this party, let’s book.
    3. to work as a bookmaker: He started a restaurant with money he got from booking.


  1. of or relating to a book or books: the book department; a book salesman.
  2. derived or learned from or based on books: a book knowledge of sailing.
  3. shown by a book of account: The firm’s book profit was $53,680.

Verb Phrases

  1. book in, to sign in, as at a job.
  2. book out, to sign out, as at a job.
  3. book up, to sell out in advance: The hotel is booked up for the Christmas holidays.
  1. bring to book, to call to account; bring to justice: Someday he will be brought to book for his misdeeds.
  2. by the book, according to the correct or established form; in the usual manner: an unimaginative individual who does everything by the book.
  3. close the books, to balance accounts at the end of an accounting period; settle accounts.
  4. cook the books, Informal. cook1(def 12)
  5. in one’s bad books, out of favor; disliked by someone: He’s in the boss’s bad books.
  6. in one’s book, in one’s personal judgment or opinion: In my book, he’s not to be trusted.
  7. in one’s good books, in favor; liked by someone.
  8. like a book, completely; thoroughly: She knew the area like a book.
  9. make book,
    1. to accept or place the bets of others, as on horse races, especially as a business.
    2. to wager; bet: You can make book on it that he won’t arrive in time.
  10. off the books, done or performed for cash or without keeping full business records: especially as a way to avoid paying income tax, employment benefits, etc.: Much of his work as a night watchman is done off the books.
  11. one for the book/books, a noteworthy incident; something extraordinary: The daring rescue was one for the book.
  12. on the books, entered in a list or record: He claims to have graduated from Harvard, but his name is not on the books.
  13. throw the book at, Informal.
    1. to sentence (an offender, lawbreaker, etc.) to the maximum penalties for all charges against that person.
    2. to punish or chide severely.
  14. without book,
    1. from memory.
    2. without authority: to punish without book.
  15. write the book, to be the prototype, originator, leader, etc., of: So far as investment banking is concerned, they wrote the book.


  1. unable to offer any appointments or accept any reservations, etc; fully booked; full up


  1. a number of printed or written pages bound together along one edge and usually protected by thick paper or stiff pasteboard coversSee also hardback, paperback
    1. a written work or composition, such as a novel, technical manual, or dictionary
    2. (as modifier)the book trade; book reviews
    3. (in combination)bookseller; bookshop; bookshelf; bookrack
  2. a number of blank or ruled sheets of paper bound together, used to record lessons, keep accounts, etc
  3. (plural) a record of the transactions of a business or society
  4. the script of a play or the libretto of an opera, musical, etc
  5. a major division of a written composition, as of a long novel or of the Bible
  6. a number of tickets, sheets, stamps, etc, fastened together along one edge
  7. bookmaking a record of the bets made on a horse race or other event
  8. (in card games) the number of tricks that must be taken by a side or player before any trick has a scoring valuein bridge, six of the 13 tricks form the book
  9. strict or rigid regulations, rules, or standards (esp in the phrases according to the book, by the book)
  10. a source of knowledge or authoritythe book of life
  11. a telephone directory (in the phrase in the book)
  12. the book (sometimes capital) the Bible
  13. an open book a person or subject that is thoroughly understood
  14. a closed book a person or subject that is unknown or beyond comprehensionchemistry is a closed book to him
  15. bring to book to reprimand or require (someone) to give an explanation of his conduct
  16. close the book on to bring to a definite endwe have closed the book on apartheid
  17. close the books accounting to balance accounts in order to prepare a statement or report
  18. cook the books informal to make fraudulent alterations to business or other accounts
  19. in my book according to my view of things
  20. in someone’s bad books regarded by someone with disfavour
  21. in someone’s good books regarded by someone with favour
  22. keep the books to keep written records of the finances of a business or other enterprise
  23. on the books
    1. enrolled as a member
    2. registered or recorded
  24. read someone like a book to understand a person, or his motives, character, etc, thoroughly and clearly
  25. throw the book at
    1. to charge with every relevant offence
    2. to inflict the most severe punishment on


  1. to reserve (a place, passage, etc) or engage the services of (a performer, driver, etc) in advanceto book a flight; to book a band
  2. (tr) to take the name and address of (a person guilty of a minor offence) with a view to bringing a prosecutionhe was booked for ignoring a traffic signal
  3. (tr) (of a football referee) to take the name of (a player) who grossly infringes the rules while playing, two such acts resulting in the player’s dismissal from the field
  4. (tr) archaic to record in a book

Old English boc “book, writing, written document,” traditionally from Proto-Germanic *bokiz “beech” (cf. German Buch “book” Buche “beech;” see beech), the notion being of beechwood tablets on which runes were inscribed, but it may be from the tree itself (people still carve initials in them). The Old English word originally meant any written document. Latin and Sanskrit also have words for “writing” that are based on tree names (“birch” and “ash,” respectively). Meaning “libretto of an opera” is from 1768. A betting book is from 1856.


Old English bocian “to grant or assign by charter,” from book (n.). Meaning “to enter into a book, record” is early 13c. Meaning “to enter for a seat or place, issue (railway) tickets” is from 1841; “to engage a performer as a guest” is from 1872. Related: Booked; booking.

see balance the books; black book; bring to book; by the book; closed book; close the books; cook the books; crack a book; hit the books; in one’s book; in someone’s bad graces (books); judge a book by its cover; know like a book; make book; nose in a book; one for the books; open book; take a leaf out of someone’s book; throw the book at; wrote the book on.

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