Books To Own That Will Make Your Shelves Beautiful

by Julia Seales

When I was younger and I watched Beauty and the Beast, I fell in love. No, I’m not talking about with the Beast. I’m talking about his amazing LIBRARY. The huge windows, the open two-story floor plan, the wall to wall BOOKS… that was truly the best room ever. Since watching that movie and discovering that such a place could exist (even if it was just in a cartoon), I’ve been striving to one day own my own beautiful library.

Of course, since I don’t have an enormous room with huge windows and dozens of bookshelves, I’m focusing on the most important part of a library: the books. E-books are awesome, but nothing beats a beautiful hard copy of your favorite novel. And one thing I love almost as reading an amazing book is the feeling of finishing it and displaying it on my shelf.

Naturally, something that makes that feeling even better is when the book looks particularly beautiful on the shelf. They say not to judge a book by its cover, but the classics often come in so many different covers that you can choose your favorite. So go ahead. Beautify your shelves today with the following super-gorgeous book collections. Because nothing is a more perfect decoration than piles and piles of books.

The Juniper Books Harry Potter Set

My Harry Potter collection looks pretty worn, because I've read it so many times. I could use a new set (can you ever have too many?) and these in particular are GORGEOUS and customizable: you can purchase them in the colors of your favorite Hogwarts house.

The In Bloom Book Collection

These books, featuring illustrated covers with bright colors and beautiful flowers, are available to buy as a set or individually. They even come with matching bookmarks. SIGN ME UP.

Barnes & Noble Collectible Editions

Every time I go to Barnes & Noble, I end up looking through their Collectible Editions section, because the books are just SO beautiful. I bought the Pride and Prejudice copy, and the interior is just as gorgeous as the exterior. Plus, if you collect more than one, they look seriously awesome next to each other on your shelf. Buy them here.

Penguin Cloth Covered Classics

If cloth covers are your thing, Penguin has a wonderful line of classics with minimalist patterns and pastel-covered covers. They're also quite compact, so they can fit even in small libraries. Buy them here.

The Folio Society Illustrated Books

These are gorgeous books for anyone who loves art: this collection takes classics such as Truman Capote's Breakfast at Tiffany's and adds beautiful illustrations. Buy them here.

Penguin Drop Caps

For serious collectors, this is a great line: the Penguin Drop Caps collection features 26 books, each with a single letter on the cover. Together, they make the alphabet. Buy them here.

Modcloth Books

Usually, I get on Modcloth to shop for clothes, but they actually also have a great selection of books, too. The Myths, Legends, & Lore collection is my favorite, because they look beautiful on a shelf, but also are quite interesting. The quirky selection is great for book collectors who are looking for something a little offbeat and vintage-inspired.

Anthropologie Books

Speaking of another clothing store that has beautiful books, Anthropologie is great for those who enjoy lifestyle books and cookbooks. The colorful vintage selection looks cute on shelves and also has great content.

The Hobbit Pocket Edition

My copy of The Hobbit doesn't even have a cover any more, because it fell off somewhere between my dad reading it a million times and him passing it down to me. I'm thinking it might be time to buy a new copy, and this leather-bound pocket edition is my favorite option I've stumbled upon.

Picador Modern Classics

These tiny little titles are pocket-sized, shiny, and gorgeous. Featuring authors like Marilynne Robinson and Jeffery Eugenides, they're the kind of books you'll have to own the entire set of, because they're just that pretty — and it happens to be lovely that they fit in just about every bag you own. You can't be caught anywhere without a book, of course.

Images: Juniper Books; Rifle Paper Co; Barnes & Noble; Penguin(2); The Folio Society; Modcloth; Anthropologie; Houghton Mifflin; Picador