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30 Books with Unusual Bindings


Thirty Books with really cool, unusual bindings!

Sweet O’ The Year - Mother of Pearl InlayFetish: Masterpieces of Erotic Fantasy Photography - RubberA museum-quality set of archival brass book bindings.Martin Fierro - Cowhide and furThe Personal History of David Copperfield - Charles Dickens - ivory frontpiece

I love reading. I also love books, and I don’t think the two always go together. Some people are in it just for the story, and would read any old copy equally, others are collectors of visuals or value and don’t even read the books. I love both, and am fascinated and delighted equally by the insides and outsides of books. This bit’s dedicated to the outside, and all the creativity, different materials and thought that goes into them. It’s not all cloth, leather and paper – from goatskin to gold and eelskin to ivory, check out some of these bindings – 30 in all.

Sweet O’ The Year - Mother of Pearl InlayFetish: Masterpieces of Erotic Fantasy Photography - RubberA museum-quality set of archival brass book bindings.Martin Fierro - Cowhide and furThe Personal History of David Copperfield - Charles Dickens - ivory frontpiece

Left to right: Mother of Pearl, Rubber, Brass, Fur, Ivory.

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Beth Carswell

About Beth Carswell

I've been reading, selling, researching, loving and writing about books with AbeBooks since 2000.

5 Responses to “30 Books with Unusual Bindings”

  1. What a wonderfully neat idea posting about these interesting and unusual book covers. It makes me want to peruse the amazing selection on AbeBooks rare and antiquarian sections to see what I can come across.

  2. Good point about book bindings. A book can be a thing of beauty in both form and content – as only booklovers understand. I too will have a look at the rare books available on abe.com – I wasn’t aware that abe carries such an interesting collection. And wow, some of the bindings are amazing! Who would ever think of a fur-covered book, or a rubber binding? Fascinating.

  3. Beth Carswell

    Hi Rob,
    Thanks for the link/mention. Yeah, the slithering/swimming section gave me the heebie-jeebies a bit too, but when you think about it, it’s just sort of….aquatic leather! And it does make for interesting perusal.

    I was secretly hoping to find something really macabre, like a book bound in human skin or somesuch, but no such luck. But you know one exists somewhere!

  4. Hi Elizabeth,
    My pleasure – it’s an article worth mentioning. Thanks for authoring it!

    As for a book bound in human skin – well I know there’s one in Edinburgh (only a few short miles from where I live). It’s housed at the Surgeons’ Hall Museum from a portion of skin from William Burke (of Burke and Hare ‘fame’). There’s a small pic of it here:

    http://www.scotlandandmedicine.com/site/CMD=PICDETAIL/PICID=248/726/default.aspx

    *Shivers*….grisly stuff! :o)
    Take care
    Rob

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. I do like the covers, but come on, SHARK SKIN? Yuck!! - RobAroundBooks - January 16, 2009

    [...] at the Reading Copy Book Blog (the bookish blog run by the staff at AbeBooks) points to a very interesting portion of [...]

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