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Books about Books

photograph of the top of several books open and laying in a pile

A good book can feature a journey to a distant land, an impossible reality, or sometimes, stories within a story. Authors often include or invent books of great power and importance within their imagined worlds. Our teen librarians created this list of some of their favorite books about books for teens.

Books have a unique ability to help you understand the characters within their pages, sharing new and unfamiliar ideas, emotions, and experiences. Textbooks can share the latest scientific theories, while musty, battered tomes can hold ancient histories or hoarded secrets. With so much power in their pages, it’s no wonder that books feature prominently in many stories - and with the titles in this list, you can read and see for yourself how important a collection of pages can be.

The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert - All Alice has known since she was little was the open road. Alice and her mother always seem to be one-step ahead of the bad luck that follows them. She doesn’t think their luck can get much worse until her grandmother, author of cult classic dark fairy tales, dies and her mother disappears. To save her mother, Alice must enter the fantasy world her grandmother created. First in a series. Also available as an ebook and audiobook on Overdrive as well as an audiobook on Hoopla.

Into the Lion’s Den by Linda Fairstein - Devlin Quick is a book lover and detective. When one of her friends sees someone rip a page out of a rare book from the New York Public Library, Devlin is on the case! As she pieces the clues together, it turns out this case may be bigger than she thought. First in a series. Also available as an ebook on Overdrive.

Grimoire Noir by Vera Greentea - Bucky lives in a town with a secret. All of the girls who live there are witches. When his sister is kidnapped because of her powers, he’ll have to find a way to save her, and a dusty old book might be the key. Also available as an ebook on Overdrive.

Inkheart by Cornelia Funke - Twelve-year-old Meggie and her father, Mo, have always shared a love and appreciation for books, but one fateful night, Meggie learns just how powerful books can be when her father reads INKHEART aloud, summoning an evil ruler from its very pages and into the real world. Meggie must learn how to become a heroine and harness the power that her father possesses in order to save the ones she loves. Also available as an Overdrive ebook and audiobook.

Eyes Like Stars by Lisa Mantchev - Within the Theatre Illuminata is a magical tome known only as The Book which contains every play ever written. The Book is bound to the Theatre, and, through its magic, the characters of the plays are brought to life. 

Magus of the Library by Izumi Mitsu - Theo is a young boy in the village of Amun with a fierce love of books, but because he lives in the poorer side of town, he is barred from the village library. He desperately wants to live somewhere he won’t be limited by his origins: Aftzaak, City of Books. When a Kafna, a librarian from the Great Library, visits Amun, Theo’s dreams suddenly become a possibility, and he determines to study to become a Kafna himself. First in a manga series.

Sorcery of Thorns by Margaret Robertson - Elisabeth grew up in Austermeer’s Great Libraries, where books are alive with power. They whisper their secrets and rattle beneath iron chains, and, if provoked, have the potential to transform into monsters of ink and leather. Elisabeth hopes to become a warden, to stand guard against this possibility and the evil sorcerers who would see this happen - until the library’s most dangerous grimoire breaks free, and Elisabeth’s desperate attempts to stop it and protect the library implicates her in the crime. Available as an ebook on Overdrive.

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell - Cath’s greatest love in life is the Simon Snow series and the fandom that surrounds it. Those books have helped her and her twin sister through the loss of their mom and everything else in between. As Cath gets ready to leave for college without her twin sister as her roommate, she has to decide if she is ready to leave Simon Snow and his world behind and live her own life. Also available as an ebook and eaudiobook on Overdrive.

Witch Hat Atelier by Kamome Shirahama - All her life, Coco has admired magicians but believed their power to be unattainable to people born without magic, like her. When she spies on a traveling magician and learns his secret, she’s whisked away to a brand new world to learn magic… or else have her memories erased. First in a manga series. Also available as an ebook on Overdrive.

The Wild Book by Juan Villoro - When his parents separate at the start of the summer, 13-year-old Juan is devastated, but his situation gets even worse when he learns that he has to spend the season with his Uncle Tito. As Juan grows to like his eccentric and reclusive Uncle Tito and learns his way around the labyrinthine library, he sees something odd: The books can rearrange themselves, and even their words can change. When Juan tells him about this, Uncle Tito says that Juan is a Lector Princeps, able to find the elusive Wild Book, which has never been read by anyone. And so, Juan’s quest begins. Also available as an ebook on Hoopla.

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