I find books about books to be delightful. Celebrations of favorite books, examinations of the reading life, pictures of bookshelves and book stacks…I love it all. Over the last few years I’ve amassed a small collection of these and I thought it would be fun to share them! They would, of course, also make wonderful gifts for the book lover in your life this holiday season.
As always, I’m linking to books here through Bookshop.org, where all of your purchases benefit independent bookstores. These small shops need our help so badly as foot traffic has halted drastically this year due to Covid, so please please please buy your books through Bookshop.org or your favorite local bookshop! Bookshop.org is a great, easy to navigate site and really the best alternative to Amazon that I’ve found.
Bibliostyle: How We Live at Home With Books: I wrote a review here and this is one of my absolute favorite coffee table books. Nina Freudenberger traveled the world with her photographer Shade Degges to capture the home libraries and bookshelves of stylish and interesting people, and the photos and interviews are just wonderful. Bookshelves and book stacks are my absolute favorite thing to see in any home, so I just loved getting a peek into the homes featured here and seeing the way people style (or don’t!), and organize their book collections.
I Will Judge You By Your Bookshelf: I got this recently and love it. Grant Snider is a talented writer and artist who often has his comics featured in the NY Times, and this is a collection of new comics he created about the bookish life – reading, writing, procrastinating, etc. His comics are SO charming and often really poignant on the subject of reading and the way a book can capture you and take you away to a new place. I just love this book and think it would be such a great gift for anyone who loves reading and writing.
My Ideal Bookshelf: This is by Jane Mount of Ideal Bookshelf, and it’s a collection of the illustrated ideal bookshelves of various bookish celebs and overall interesting people – David Chang, Simon Doonan, Coralie Bickford-Smith and many more. I love Jane’s book illustrations so it’s great to have a whole collection of them, and it’s also fun to read about the favorite books of all of the people featured.
A Booklover’s Guide to New York: What a wonderful and charmingbook! Written by Cleo Le-Tan and featuring illustrations from her father, the late artist Pierre Le-Tan, this is all about bookish landmarks around New York. It celebrates the city’s independent bookstores, shares the literary connections that figure into the history of other places in the city (such as Pete’s Tavern and Bemelman’s Bar), and features interviews with bookish New Yorkers. I love that it’s broken up by neighborhood. Overall a fantastic book for anyone but especially a booklover who loves NYC!
For the Love of Books: Designing and Curating a Home Library: This one is on my wishlist! Written by Elizabeth Lane and Thatcher Wine of Juniper Books, For the Love of Books shares tips and ideas for exactly what the title says – designing and curating your home library. Juniper Books is an amazing source for beautiful books with special covers, so Elizabeth and Thatcher are experts on the subject. As Thatcher says, we can’t read all of our books at once, so while they’re sitting on our shelves waiting for us to get to them, they might as well be serving a purpose for us – helping to make our our homes beautiful!
Bibliophile: An Illustrated Miscellany: I don’t have this one but it’s another by Jane Mount of Ideal Bookshelf, and looks really fun! With her illustrations throughout, Bibliophile features tours of bookstores, curated book collections, recommendations from bookish people, and more.
Are there any books about books that I missed? Let me know what I need to add to my wishlist!
Great list! Another great (and just released!) one is the Call Me Ishmael phone book by Stephanie Kent and Logan Smalley- really cool book about books for book lovers!