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Okay, so I don't know about you but I love re-organising my bookcase. It's probably unhealthy at this point. I've tried out a bunch of different systems and combinations of systems. These are the ones I found were the most popular and the pros and cons of all of them.

By Author (Alphabetical)

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Pretty simple. Just like at the library or bookstore.


  • Easy to navigate
  • Straightforward
  • Easy to add new books to


  • Not very aesthetically pleasing

By Colour

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From left to right: silver-white-cream-yellow-gold-orange-red-dark pink-dark purple-light purple-light blue-dark blue-blue green-green-brown/bronze-black-grey.


  • The most aesthetically pleasing
  • Looks like an ig post
  • Looks nice from a distance


  • Mildly infuriating up close
  • Series and authors aren't together
  • Hard to find what you want

By Genre

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Separated by fantasies, thrillers, contemporaries, etc.


  • Helps visualise what genres you own and how many books in them
  • You can separate favourite/least favourite genres
  • Easy to navigate


  • Favourite/least favourite books and series are mixed together

By Height

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Books that are the same height go on the same shelf. Mass production paperbacks together, tall hard covers together, regular paperbacks, volumes together, etc.


  • Aesthetically pleasing/satisfying
  • Looks very put together and thought-through


  • Very hard to find enough books that are exactly the same height (most are even just mm off)

By Number of Books

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Categorise shelves based on the number of books in a series. Trilogies on one shelf, 4+ on another, standalone novels on another one, etc.


  • Separates your series, types of series, and standalones


By Rating

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5 stars at the top, 1-2 stars at the bottom, everything else in between (depends on how many shelves/cases you're working with).


  • Keeps your favourite together
  • Helps you visualise your favourite author, genres, etc
  • Keeps your least favourite books out of sight


  • Might separate series/same author books

By TBR/Read

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Any books you haven't read yet go on a different shelf.


  • Keeps them separate
  • Motivates you to read TBR books


  • Not very organised besides "read and not read"
  • Needs to be combined with other systems

By Title (Alphabetical)

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Do I need to explain?


  • Easy to navigate
  • Simple to learn
  • Easy to add new books to


  • Maybe looks unorganized
  • Different heights are mixed around
  • Hard covers and paperbacks aren't separate

By the Spine (Inverted)

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Just turn the books the other way so the spines are facing in.


  • Minimalist
  • Neutral tones


  • Can't see the titles
  • Hard to navigate
  • No "personality"

Final Thoughts

I found that a combination of two or three systems worked best.

The rainbow one was beautiful but not functional at all. It was very satisfying to see but I immediately reorganised my books because I knew I wouldn't be able to use it.

I didn't even try the inverted spines one because I hate it. How do you even find your books? It's good for showrooms and that's about it.

The two alphabetical ones are functional and simple to use but maybe not the most fun. I use the by author on my big bookcase. I don't really need it in order sine I know my books well enough to just know where they ll are but it makes me feel better to have some sort of order. I used the by title one one my smaller shelf of standalones.

I really liked the separate genres one but it made me realise I don't have enough different genres to use it. I'll definitely try it again in the future, when I have more contemporary, thrillers, etc and not just fantasy and dystonians.

I actually really like the height one even though there were minute differences in heights. Ultimately, it was hard because I have a few books that are just way different heights so I didn't really have anywhere to put them.

Number of books didn't really work for me because I didn't have enough shelves to account for series that still had books coming out or I definitely want to try it again in the future though, when I have more books and more shelves.

I ended up using the rating one although a much softer version. I didn't use a 1-5 stars rating but more of a "I would save in a house fire", "I would read again", and "meh". I don't really keep books I don't like (or buy them in the first place as I'm very selective/cheap). I think it's a great way to keep your favourite together and in easy access (and to grab an armful and run in a fire of course).

All in all, this helped me create a system that I can easily add to and sort through. I do want to go back to a few in the future like I said. Hope this helped you organise your shelves!

That's it.

Hope you enjoyed. If you're picking up what I'm putting down, you can check out my other articles and my Books collection here:

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