BookBook Review

November 30, 2013

This is not a review of books about book reviews. (Ouch.)

This is a review of BookBooks, a line of iPhone, iPad, iMac, and MacBook covers manufactured by TwelveSouth, a fanatically Apple-devoted accessory company.

TwelveSouth makes all kinds of elegant Apple accessories, but what we’re concerned with here are their leather BookBook cases, of which we are, apparently, dedicated fans.

bookbook-1It’s a classic case of BookBook addiction.

Between the two of us, Rick and i currently own six BookBook cases: two iPhone 4S’, an iPhone 5S, an iPad mini, an iPad 4, and a MacBook Air. I don’t own one for my MacBook Pro, mostly because I don’t move it from my desk much, and when I do, it’s in a padded briefcase. (Rick’s iPhone 4 case didn’t make it to the photo shoot on time to be included, but it’s just like mine on the top of the stack except it’s black.)

So, what’s the appeal?

First, there’s something richly tactile, nostalgic, and enjoyably aromatic about leather-bound books, unless you’re a cow, in which case you’re probably not such a big fan.

And BookBooks actually look, smell, and feel like our library of leather-bound books, which is not only cool when you’re actually reading something on your Kindle app, but it’s also a theft deterrent. How many opportunistic petty thieves do you know who want to pull a snatch-and-run for a copy of Crime and Punishment when you can get the Kindle edition for 99¢?

But the thing that sold me originally on the BookBook for my iPhone 4S is that it’s not just a case: it’s a wallet.

bookbook-4This is my new iPhone 5s BookBook. I love how it’s not just a great protective case for my phone. It’s also a beautifully crafted leather wallet with room for my driver’s license, a couple of credit cards, my health insurance card, and space behind it all for some folding money. Heading out the door for a quick errand? Just grab your KeyKeys, your BookBook, and GoGo!

It’s a great convenience to find in something so functional that simultaneously doesn’t look like an iPhone OR a wallet! It really does look like a little well-worn leather pocket book, which, since I have my Kindle library on my phone as well, it technically is.

bookbook-5It has broken in beautifully, just like a favorite pair of gloves.

bookbook-7It’s well designed so the phone fits snugly in the holder while still giving you easy access to all the fiddly bits and buttons.

bookbook-8The iPhone 5 BookBook even has a camera lens hole ready for the stealth photographers among us.

There you stand in the Louvre, “book” open, looking for all the world like a European philosophy major reading deep and important things about the Mona Lisa, when in fact you have the sound turned off and are unobtrusively snapping photos of the dear lady with no nasty guard scurrying over to tut-tut you away.

Not me, of course. But other people might do that kind of thing.

bookbook-9The other BookBook cases are equally as well made and thoughtfully engineered. Rick loves his MacBook Air BookBook. It’s like a sturdy yet lightweight zippered leather binder for all his creative brilliance, plus it looks better lying around on a coffee table than the computer itself. (Don’t tell Apple I said that.)

bookbook-11The BookBooks for iPad cases are equally functional, beautiful, and deceptive.

Last week, I was reading in a restaurant and had a friend come up to say “hi.” When I put my iPad Mini BookBook down on the table with the case open, face up, she exclaimed, “Oh! That is so cool! From across the room, I thought you were reading a hand-written journal. Even the zipper tabs look like those old-fashioned ribbon book marks.”


Going forward, all new books that come into our house via our Kindle app will be leather bound. And who wouldn’t enjoy a leather-bound copy of “Green Eggs and Ham?”

Previous post:

Next post: