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8 Best Bookshelves for the Well-Designed Home

books on shelf

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From those with the sturdiest, highest load-bearing construction, to the most beautiful, luxury pieces, follow below for a collection of the eight best bookcases on the market today.

In the age of COVID-19, during which many high-end retailers are unavailable for in-person shopping, it can be difficult to determine which furniture items are best suited to both your functional needs and aesthetic preferences.

Bookshelves are among the most frustrating furniture pieces to shop for due to their many unusual shapes, towering heights, and oft-complicated assembly instructions.

Whether in search of a sturdy bookcase for heavy books (encyclopedias, research binders, or art books), a slender bookshelf that will easily fit in that oddly skinny space between your bedroom closet and bathroom, or a luxury, artistic piece that will speak to your love of design, a bookcase for everyone exists in this list.

Follow below for eight examples of the best bookcases befitting all your storage and display needs.

Best Bookcase for Heavy BooksHSH 4-Shelf Vintage Industrial Bookshelf

HSH 4-Shelf Vintage Industrial Bookshelf, Rustic Wood and Metal Bookcase, Open Wide Office Etagere...
  • Take Home Design to New Heights: Artfully crafted of wood grain and metal, this elegantly rustic industrial bookcase takes...
  • Sturdy Construction: High level material of MDF, wood grain PVC and Square Steel Tube Frame ensure years of use. Not solid...
  • More Storage Space: Open shelves design with clean line structure provide plenty of space and allow you to have your displays...
  • Simple To Assemble: With smart design and all tools included, you never get stuck with the hard assembly jobs for the...
  • Worry-Free Service: We believe in our rustic wood and metal bookcase and that's why we back them all with 30-day free return...

With many encyclopedia sets weighing between sixty and eighty pounds, it can be challenging to find a chic, well-designed bookshelf to accommodate such hefty volumes. However, with the HSH 4-Shelf Vintage Industrial Bookshelf pictured above, the search for a sturdy bookcase for heavy books is over.

One of many high-end bookcases on this list, HSH’s bookcase offers a total of four hundred pounds of weight-bearing, with each shelf handling up to a hundred pounds alone.

The X-brace in the back provides added interest to the bookcase while also reinforcing its steel tube frame. The mock-wood-grain-topped MDF shelves are lightweight enough to assemble the piece easily but sturdy enough to support significant weight.

An Amazon Choice pick, this wide etagere bookshelf boasts a beautiful display, solid construction, and free Prime shipping.

Key Features

  • Available in Two Sizes This industrial-inspired bookcase is available for purchase with either three of four shelves. While the height difference between the two is only fifteen inches, the three-shelf bookcase is $50 cheaper than the four-shelf piece. However, both price in at under $180, making either choice an absolute steal. For a larger collection of books, consider purchasing two of the four-shelf bookcases; just $360 will deliver 800 pounds of book storage!
  • Free-Standing, Sturdy Frame While the bookcase described above is not listed in the “Best Bookcase for Apartments” section of this article, it is still a fitting choice for anyone whose lease does not allow for wall-mounted or -supported home decor. With its steel cross brace and extensive frame, this bookshelf offers added support behind and underneath each shelf, making it a safe choice for most homes.
  • Over 450 5-Star Reviews 80% of Amazon reviewers for this bookshelf awarding it five out of five stars for its “solid construction,” “lightweight but sturdy” design, and “easy assembly.”
  • Accurate Product Description Numerous verified purchaser reviews of the bookshelf include photos, which all match the appearance pictured and described within the original listing. One customer even noted that the bookshelf “looks just like the picture” and that she “would not hesitate to recommend or buy again.”

View HSH 4-Shelf Vintage Industrial Bookshelf, Rustic Wood and Metal Bookcase, Open Wide Office Etagere... on Amazon

Best Bookcase for Lots of BooksTribesigns Triple Wide 5-Shelf Bookcase

Tribesigns Triple Wide 5-Shelf Bookcase, Etagere Large Open Bookshelf Vintage Industrial Style...
  • 【Triple & Open Design】: It measures 70” H x 70.86” W x 12.59” D. This 14 open Bookshelves showcase your favorite...
  • 【Modern & industrial charm】: It pairs a black steel frame with fourteen retro brown manufactured wood shelves. This...
  • 【DURABLE AND STURDY】: Built from durable engineered wood with a sturdy steel frame, reinforced by crossbar on the back,...
  • 【Specifiction】: Compartments height 14.2-inch. Each shelf (14 shelf) can accommodate up to 75 lbs. Self-leveling feet to...
  • 【GUARANTEE】: Comes in TWO PACKAGES with detailed and illustrated instructions and numbered parts. We offer 18 months...

Similar in design to HSH’s bookcase listed just before it, Tribesign’s Triple Wide 5-Shelf Bookcase offers consumers a natural aesthetic with nearly unparalleled book-stacking capacity for such a low price.

The biggest bookshelf on this list, Tribesign’s mammoth design measures nearly six feet across and offers fourteen shelves between its three rows. Described in the listing as “pair[ing] a black steel frame with fourteen retro brown manufactured wood shelves,” this “industrial-inspired bookshelf” promises to create “an eye-catching display vignette” in any home.

With extra ladder-style braces on each side of the frame and additional cross-braces on the two sets of five shelves, this heavy-duty bookshelf offers maximum display potential without sacrificing style.

Key Features

  • 1,000lb+ Display Capacity Over 200 five-star customer reviews would be reason enough to purchase this bookcase without the added benefit of half a ton of storage capacity. One Amazon customer described the piece as “very sturdy and [capable of] hold[ing] a lot of weight” after they bought it for her office; they were so pleased with their purchase that they finished off the review with “We love it!”
  • Trendy, Industrial Design The contrast between the dark-brushed metal and rustic, stained MDF of this bookcase, combined with its geometric lines and sleek frame contribute to its stunning, sought-after industrial style. Described by customers as “unique,” “simple and classic,” this bookshelf is much beloved by its many owners.
  • Affordable Price At under $250 (with free shipping), Tribesign’s 14-shelf bookcase offers more than most would expect for twice its price!

View Tribesigns Triple Wide 5-Shelf Bookcase, Etagere Large Open Bookshelf Vintage Industrial Style... on Amazon

Best Angled BookshelfHOMFA Metal 4 Shelf Bookcase

HOMFA Metal 4 Shelf Bookcase, Multifunctional Ladder-Shaped Plant Flower Stand Rack Bookrack Storage...
  • ★GOOD MATERIAL: Made of high quality sturdy iron material, this 4 tier bookcase is stable, durable, non-toxic, and with...
  • ★NICE AND PRACTICAL RACK: Stylish and durable bookcase, sleek design, metal trapezoid construction, support up to 66lbs of...
  • ★MULTIFUNCTIONAL: This storage rack is suitable to be placed in the hall, living room, bed room, balcony,etc. And with the...
  • ★EASY TO ASSEMBLE: This bookcase is very easy to assemble, tool and instruction included. And designed with the ladder...
  • ★BOOKSHELF SIZE: 23.6"L x 13.8"W x 57.9"H(60cm X 35cm X 147cm).

While angled bookshelves rarely offer the load-bearing and display capacity of other bookshelves, they are on-trend for their delicate appearance and versatility of use.

With shelves a bit shallower than those in the bookshelves listed previously in this article, HOMFA’s Metal 4 Shelf Bookcase offers the perfect piece for next to a bed (in lieu of nightstands), in a cozy reading nook, or on a balcony. HOMFA’s piece also reflects this year’s monochrome interiors trend, with its solid black frame and corresponding shelves.

Key Features

  • Sleek, On-Trend Style This bookshelf’s ladder shape perfectly suits both interior and outdoor decorating. As versatile as it is minimalistic, HOMFA’s bookshelf offers purchasers the option to use the piece as a plant stand, bookshelf, or trinket display.
  • Space-Saving, Modular Design This beautiful, all-metal bookshelf offered by HOMFA is delicate, geometric, and perfectly proportioned for small homes and apartments. As pictured above, two can easily be purchased and lined up next to each other seamlessly, making the design quite modular.
  • Affordable Price Listed for just under $60 each, there is no harm in buying more than one!

View HOMFA Metal 4 Shelf Bookcase, Multifunctional Ladder-Shaped Plant Flower Stand Rack Bookrack Storage... on Amazon

Best Wall-Mount BookshelfNathan James Theo 5-Shelf Bookcase

Sale
Nathan James Theo 5-Shelf Modern Bookcase, Open Wall Mount Ladder Bookshelf with Industrial Metal...
  • Tall, modern wall mount bookcase or shelving great for narrow spaces.
  • Gold frame bookshelf as open case display for decor, collectibles or as bookshelves for extra storage.
  • Lifetime manufacturer warranty: try for 100 days.
  • Easy 30-minute assembly.
  • Length: 24" x Width: 12" x Height: 73" space-saving bookcase.

With over a thousand five-star reviews on Amazon alone, Nathan James’ Theo Five-Shelf Ladder Bookcase offers a streamlined aesthetic and elevated materials perfect for any homeowner or decorator.

Though offered in a number of color combinations, perhaps the most stunning is the white and gold set pictured above.

The timeless antiqued-gold (almost brass) poles and soft white (almost marblescent) shelves provide any room with a perfect wall-mounted piece that will offset trinkets, sculptures, and books beautifully, whether the theme is Art Deco, Mid-Century Modern, Contemporary Coastal, or Industrial Glam.

Key Features

  • Tons of Customer Praise Rated #7 on Amazon’s Best Sellers list for bookshelves, this stunning high quality bookshelf boasts over 1,000 five-star reviews from purchasers.
  • Thin, Wall-Mounted Frame This modernist, minimalist wall-mount bookshelf may look like it would retail for several hundred dollars (at least), but the piece is actually listed for just over $150 on Amazon (with free shipping available to Prime members). With its thin frame, Nathan James’ Theo bookshelf weighs only forty pounds and can be assembled and secured safely to the wall in under thirty minutes.
  • Lifetime Manufacturer Warranty Nathan James, self-described as “the furniture company built for this generation,” not only promises a lifetime manufacturer warranty to purchasers, but also guarantees all purchases are “backed by a 100% money-back” and if there are any quality issues, they will “send you a replacement immediately—no questions asked.”

View Nathan James Theo 5-Shelf Modern Bookcase, Open Wall Mount Ladder Bookshelf with Industrial Metal... on Amazon

Best Bookshelf-Desk HybridCoavas Writing Desk with Five Shelves

Office Computer Desk with Storage Large Home Writing Desk with 5 Shelves White Kids Writing Desk...
  • Any installation problems, damages or replacement parts of this desk, contact SELLER FIRST by email, then your problem will...
  • wood office computer writing desk 🍓🍓🍓 - [ INTEGRATED STORAGE SPACE ]🍓🍓🍓 - Include 5 shelves on the side of...
  • wood office computer writing desk 🍓🍓🍓 - [ TRENDY AND DESIGN ]🍓🍓🍓 - sturdy and solid MDF panels with a...
  • wood office computer writing desk 🍓🍓🍓 - [CABLE FRIENDLY & BROAD USAGE] 🍓🍓🍓- A hardware friendly desk with...
  • wood office computer writing desk 🍓🍓🍓 - [EASY TO ASSEMBLE] 🍓🍓🍓- Delivered with a full set of screws and an...

Perfect for a shared office or makeshift work-from-home space, this desk by Coavas offers five shelves sized to fit all sorts of books, from hardcover reference and textbooks to softcover pleasure reads and miniatures.

From the photos provided in the listing, this bookshelf-desk duo will provide the purchaser with enough space to house at least thirty books, if not more.

This piece’s versatility makes it the right choice for any workspace, whether the buyer is a student or a professional.

Key Features

  • Double-Duty Design Created as both a desk and a storage unit, this bookshelf-desk hybrid allows the purchaser easy access to books they may need while studying, researching, or taking a break for a bit of light reading. The shelves are tall enough to store all kinds of books, as well as planners, files, and a whole host of other office supplies.
  • Scandinavian Style The Scandi interior design trend has outlasted many others with its appeal reaching both the masses and those with an eye for high-design. With its pale wood, warm white paint, and sleek edges, this desk will suit nearly every aesthetic and room design.
  • Affordable Price Another affordable piece, this workstation with five bookshelves is priced at just under $200 (plus free shipping for Prime members).
  • Durable Construction This desk-bookshelf duo has an average 4.4-star rating on Amazon for durability and a 4.0-star rating for sturdiness.

View Office Computer Desk with Storage Large Home Writing Desk with 5 Shelves White Kids Writing Desk... on Amazon

Best Bookshelf for Small SpacesVasagle Tree Bookshelf

VASAGLE Tree Bookshelf, 8-Tier Floor Standing Bookcase, with Wooden Shelves for Living Room, Home...
  • LOOKIN' GOOD, BOOKSHELF: Liven up your home with a tree-branch-inspired bookshelf that will catch eyes with its stylish...
  • ORGANIZED GALORE: You name it—books, movies, video games, magazines—this necessary organizer has enough storage to hold...
  • IT HAS THE STRENGTH: Gone are the days of worrying about those heavy books you pile up; each wooden bookshelf holds up to 22...
  • SAFETY FIRST: Now you can have confidence in security; anti-toppling hardware and thickened tapping screws are included to...
  • WHAT YOU GET: A freestanding bookshelf with 8 storage shelves, an easy-to-follow assembly process, and a chic way to elevate...

Tree bookshelves are the perfect choice for small spaces, whether one is looking to place a bookcase in an entryway, a niche, or a corner, as they take up very little floor space and allow for an unusual but aesthetically pleasing display.

The eight-tier standing bookcase pictured above, manufactured by furniture company Vasagle, offers an eclectic modern vibe to any room with its strong angles and polished wood shelves.

The shelf is available in walnut or rustic brown, the first of which whispers mid-century modern and the latter of which befits any country or coastal-inspired home.

Key Features

  • Affordable! Vasagle’s five-foot tree bookshelf is both the perfect small size and the perfect low price. Listed for under $75 on Amazon (and eligible for free Prime shipping), this bookshelf is a no-brainer purchase for anyone searching to fill an empty spot in their home.
  • Small Size with Big Impact! Vasagle’s tree bookshelf is just ten inches deep and under twenty inches wide but measures nearly five-feet tall, ensuring that it will fit in any small space while efficiently and attractively organizing your collection of books. Despite its small size, it can support up to 176 pounds of books (with each shelf holding up to 22 pounds).
  • Easy Assembly! Recent reviews of the bookshelf on Amazon praise the piece for how easy it is to put together, garnering an average 4.2 star rating in this category. Weighing under thirty pounds, the shelf is light enough for most purchasers to assemble by themselves.

View VASAGLE Tree Bookshelf, 8-Tier Floor Standing Bookcase, with Wooden Shelves for Living Room, Home... on Amazon

Best Bookshelf with Built-In StorageSauder Cottage Road Library with Doors

Sauder Cottage Road Library with Doors, Soft White finish
  • Three adjustable shelves
  • Hidden storage behind doors
  • Quick and easy assembly with patented slide-on Moldings
  • Soft White Finish with lintel oak accents
  • Engineered wood

Available in several finishes ranging from polished to rustic, Sauder’s Cottage Road Library with Doors offers a versatile piece that can be used in virtually any room.

This bookcase can be used not only for its intended purpose, but also as a dresser, a hall tree, a linen closet, or a laundry room storage unit.

The company prides itself on both its sustainable, local manufacturing and the “simplistic beauty” of each of its designs.

Key Features

  • Flexible Storage According to the bookshelf’s listing, two of the shelves are adjustable, “provid[ing] you with the ability to move them to different heights to create flexible storage options for items of all shapes and sizes.”
  • Sustainable Design Many of Sauder’s pieces are made from manufactured wood, the byproducts of which are also turned into sellable products like pet bedding in order to minimize the amount of waste contributed to landfills after the production of their furniture. The majority of their pieces are also made locally in the United States, with “90% of [their] product is still produced just a stone’s-throw from the barn in Archbold, Ohio where it all started.”
  • Customer Satisfaction With over 320 five-star reviews, this bookshelf by Sauder is considered by many to be a quality buy, well below the price one might expect. One customer purchased four units, lining an entire wall of her office with the libraries!

View Sauder Cottage Road Library with Doors, Soft White finish on Amazon

Best Corner BookshelfCasual Home 3-Shelf Folding Bookcase

Sale
Casual Home 3-Shelf Folding Bookcase (14" Wide)-Mahagony
  • Three (3) spacious shelves provide all the storage space you need
  • Foldable design makes for effortless storage, transport, or rearrangement
  • Four (4) durable legs provide balanced support for your belongings
  • Rich mahogany finish accentuates the solid wood construction for increased durability and longevity with no assembly required
  • Dimensions: 38 inches high x 14 inches wide x 11.5 inches deep: Weight: 10 pounds

Rather special pieces, these three-shelf bookcases by Casual Home offer a multitude of opportunities for customization, from the color to the orientation of each unit.

Evoking an early 1900s style reminiscent of Frank Lloyd Wright’s furniture and interior decor designs, these bookshelves are offered in a multitude of muted hues, from “Truffle Brown” to “Honey Oak” (pictured above on the left).

Made from genuine wood, each piece is sturdy but light, weighing in at just over ten pounds.

Key Features

  • Lots of Color Options Casual Home offers the bookshelf in nine different shades, each an organic color that would fit in well with most decor schemes. These colors include Black, Chestnut, Espresso, Honey Oak, Mahogany, Natural, Truffle Brown, Walnut, and White.
  • Versatile Design Each bookcase can either be fitted into a corner by itself (for maximum space-saving) or set against another unit, expanding the amount of storage and display space available to the decorator. Casual Home’s collection also includes two sizes of traditional bookcases (14” and 27.5” wide), which with the corner bookcases can be paired. All of Casual Home’s pieces in this collection are also foldable and thus easily transported or stored.
  • “Well-Worth the Money” With nearly 1,800 five-star reviews on Amazon, Casual Home’s corner bookshelf has been a verified hit with consumers since it was first listed on the platform. Many purchasers have praised the piece for its “no-assembly-required” design and many others have revisited the listing to purchase additional pieces. One customer noted that she  “loved it so much, [she] bought 3 more.”

View Casual Home 3-Shelf Folding Bookcase (14" Wide)-Mahagony on Amazon

Summary: Eight Great Choices, Depending on Your Needs!

Each and every one of the pieces listed above offers a quality-controlled, specially designed bookshelf for anyone on the hunt, from the homeowner partial to a vintage aesthetic, to the decorator looking for a sharp, contemporary piece. With many boasting versatility, affordability, and hundreds of glowing customer reviews, each bookshelf detailed above provides the buyer with the perfect storage and display shelving unit.