Q:

How do you maintain hard covers on books?

A:

Quick Answer

To maintain hardback books, store the books upright on a shelf that is placed away from direct sunlight. Do not expose the books to excessive moisture. Open the book carefully to prevent breaking the spine, and do not stack books on top of each other. When placing the books on the shelf, place like-sized books together, and do not pack the books together too tightly. Take the book off the shelf by grabbing it in the middle of the spine.

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Full Answer

Only open the book as far as the spine naturally allows, as opening the book forcefully damages the spine. Avoid using bulky bookmarks, and hold the book open with both hands while reading. Alternately, lay the book on a soft surface while reading. Choose a surface that cradles the front and back covers to prevent spine damage.

Leave the dust jacket on the book, and use an archival-quality book cover to protect the dust jacket. Take the books off the shelf to dust them on a regular basis, and store unused books in archival-quality boxes. Avoid storing the books near windows, heaters or drafty areas.

Before storing hardback books, wrap the book in archival-quality paper. Avoid touching the books with dirty hands, and use only plain white paper for bookmarks to further preserve the book.

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