Basic Book Repair


We repair books to extend their use. This can mean different things to different libraries depending upon their mission. A research library will want almost every book to be preserved indefinitely. A public or school library may feel certain books need only to be kept in circulation until they lose popularity (a few months to a few years). A good repair keeps the book in serviceable condition for as long as needed and a bad repair can do more harm than good to the very materials it seeks to preserve.


Training for book repair is not a trivial enterprise. The manual below is not a substitute for formal training, but as an adjunct and reinforcement of such training. Library staff may want to seek professional conservation assistance for repair to items of historical significance.

Conservation Book Repair: A training manual (Alaska State Library)

Artemis BonaDea, Alaska State Library, Alaska Department of Education, 1995
Excellent detailed illustrations by Alexandria Prentiss help to visualize each repair. The entire 200 pages are downloadable.