Tuesday, February 25, 2014

On the Physical Quality of Books

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Y'all know I'm a bonafide #coverho, and one of my favorite collections is the Penguin English Library. But I'm not here today to talk about the beautiful patterned artwork, I want to talk about how much you can ABUSE these books!

As I've gotten older and more set in my readerly ways, I have come to appreciate the physical quality construction of books more than ever. While a pretty cover will draw me in every time, it's really of no use if the book falls apart after a page flip or two. Not the case with these Penguin English Library books AT ALL. They are beautifully designed and just as beautifully and carefully made. They can take whatever you throw at them. Quite literally.

Since I just posted yesterday about wrapping up The Woman in White, let's use it as an example. I read the book for approximately six weeks. I took it EVERYWHERE. To work most days, to lunch, to dinners. To the break room, NOT to the bathroom. But pretty much everywhere else.

When I started reading, I was slightly worried about how such a thick, chunky paperback would survive my reading habits since it's not unusual for spines to crack grotesquely or pages to dislodge themselves from binding. But this book held up like a champ! At 700 pages, it was inevitable that I would break the spine just for the sake of comfort, but because it's a well made book, whenever I close it the spine seems to heal itself. It's slightly creased, you can feel it when you run your finger over it, but it still looks beautiful and it doesn't flop open to the middle.

This series also has that velvety, coated feeling to the cover. I was concerned that this would pick up extra grease from lotiony fingerprints and whatnot, but while the white portions on the back got slightly discolored in the book's travels, overall, it still looks great!

This book has been tossed, bent, dog-eared, dropped, creased, and generally abused, and I'm so pleased with how well its held up. It makes me feel really good about taking the extra time to order these gems from the BookDepository. They aren't any more expensive than other classics--and in many cases, they're cheaper--so it's a solid investment. I love a pretty book, but I also love DIGGING IN to my books. I don't want to worry that I'm going to destroy them. Luckily, these seem indestructible.

Are there any publishers whose book quality you love? Tell me! #nomnom #bookcookiemonster

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