12 Modern Bookshelves & Bookcases Ideas for Your Home Office (2018)

… Bill Gates reads around 50 books a year.

… Warren Buffet spends 80% of his day reading (that’s about 600-1000 pages a day).

… Oprah started her own book club on TV (and instantly turned every book she featured into a bestseller).

The lesson is simple: Leaders are readers.

Now, you might be thinking: “I don’t even have 50 books on my entire bookshelf”.

Or worse: “Heck, I don’t even have a bookshelf in my office!”

Admittedly, it might take a while to get into the habit of reading 50 books a year (I’m working on it myself).

However, not having a proper bookshelf in your home office? Now there’s a problem we can solve RIGHT NOW!

Introducing… Cool & modern shelving ideas for your home office!

Top Home Office Bookshelves

Before we get into the thick of the wood (terrible joke, I know), let’s have a look at the best home office bookcases that made it into our list (and of course – which ones won an award)

BookshelfProsCons 
Top Bookshelf
4 Shelf Vintage Industrial Bookshelf4 Shelf Vintage Industrial Bookshelf
Pros: Beautiful design, easy to set up, tons of storage spaceCons: Not solid woodOur Rating: 
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Homelegance Home Office Bookcase ShelvesHomelegance Home Office Bookcase ShelvesPros: REAL wood, vintage design, lots of storage space, easy to assemble, great priceCons: Huge bookshelf, frame wobblesOur Rating: 
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Sauder 2 Shelf BookcaseSauder 2 Shelf BookcasePros: Adjustable, elegant Cherry finish, quick assembly, good priceCons: Not real wood, smallOur Rating: 
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Retro Brown 5 Tier Home Office BookcaseRetro Brown 5 Tier Home Office BookcasePros: Contemporary design, easy to assemble, sturdyCons: Not real wood, unclear instructions, expensiveOur Rating: 
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Top “No-Assembly” Bookshelf
Folding Home Office Bookshelf StorageFolding Home Office Bookshelf Storage
Pros: Foldable, great design, 0 assembly required, tons of space, protective packagingCons: Small, not real woodOur Rating: 
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Five Shelf Bookcase In Abbey Oak FinishFive Shelf Bookcase In Abbey Oak FinishPros: Adjustable shelves, lots of shelf space, sturdyCons: Hard to assemble, not real wood, insecure packagingOur Rating: 
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X Shape Home Office Ladder ShelvesX-Shape Home Office Ladder ShelvesPros: Creative design, easy assembly, cheapCons: Little shelf space, not sturdyOur Rating: 
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O&k Rustic Wood Metal BookshelvesO&k Rustic Wood Metal BookshelvesPros: Stylish, easy to assemble, adjustable feet, great companyCons: Shelves aren't real wood, wobbles Our Rating: 
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Gray Wood Adjustable Desktop BookshelvesGray Wood Adjustable Desktop BookshelvesPros: Adjustable shelves, space saver, keeps your desk organized, cheap shelving solutionCons: Small shelf space, rough textureOur Rating: 
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Top Foldable Bookcase
Home Office Folding Bookcase 4 ShelvesHome Office Folding Bookcase 4 Shelves
Pros: Little assembly required, lightweight, great customer service, protective packaging, REAL WOODCons: SmallOur Rating: 
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Home Office 3 Shelf Bookcase Royal CherryHome Office 3 Shelf Bookcase Royal CherryPros: Cheap, good customer serviceCons: Boring design, assembly takes time, instructions aren't the bestOur Rating: 
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Top Budget Bookshelf
Casual Home Office Display RackCasual Home Office Display Rack
Pros: Sleek scalloped design, tall, very cheapCons: Narrow, too tall for low ceilingsOur Rating: 
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4-shelf Vintage Industrial Bookshelf

Top Bookshelf

4 Shelf Vintage Industrial Bookshelf

Pros

  • Gorgeous rustic wood + metal design
  • Super simple to assemble
  • Plenty of storage space
  • 12-month warranty (!)

Cons

  • Not real wood

I thought I’d start with my favorite home office bookshelf right off the bat… because why bother teasing you (see, despite what my girlfriend says – I’m not a mean guy)?

This bookshelf is the closest to perfect you’ll come across:

  • The design is stunning. So stunning, that you’ll kind of feel bad sticking it in your home office where only you’ll get to see it, instead of in the living room where EVERYONE can see it
  • The craftsmanship is outstanding.
  • Assembling it is a piece of cake: It’s a matter of 10-20 minutes from start to end (even for a clumsy fella like me)
  • Cheap! It’s cheap!

Not more you could ask for from a bookshelf.

The only “problem” this bookshelf has, is that it’s not solid wood. But let’s be honest here, for this quality and price – I have no right to be greedy.

A marvelous furniture piece to have to lie around (or rather, standing up) in your home office. And the nearly unanimous positive reviews reflect that.

Our Rating: 

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Homelegance Home Office Bookcase Shelves

Homelegance Home Office Bookcase Shelves

Pros

  • Real solid wood
  • Beautiful vintage style
  • Tons of storage space
  • Easy to put together
  • Excellent price

Cons

  • Frame wobbles a little
  • Pretty big = challenging shipping

This is one of those cases where the name says it all: Home Elegance.

They definitely got that right. The modern rustic brown look + iron style finish does indeed give your home office an elegant look.

“OK, it’s elegant, I get it… what about the quality?”

Patience you must have, my young Padawan… I’m getting there.

The quality is, in one word, spectacular.

But let me give you more than just one word…

This is one the few home office bookcases I found with shelves made of REAL solid wood. I’m talking REALLY high-quality wood, just as you’d expect from the “real deal”…

Note: Surprisingly enough, the price difference isn’t even noticeable (hooray!).

One other thing you probably noticed from the picture: this bookcase is BIG. It can definitely hold more than just books, that’s for sure. I’m talking things like picture frames (big ones), pillows, a goldfish – you name it.

Unfortunately, just like any big piece of furniture, this bookcase can “take a beating” during shipping. Thankfully, it’s strong enough to arrive in good shape most of the time.

Note: There’s apparently one small corner part that sometimes falls out of place during shipping. If that happens, simply glue it to the bookcase and that should do it. Don’t bother sending it back just because of that… it’s not worth it (in my opinion).

Overall, a solid (wood) bookcase for a pretty solid price.

Our Rating: 

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Sauder 2-Shelf Bookcase

Sauder 2 Shelf Bookcase

Pros

  • Adjustable shelf
  • Elegant Cherry finish design
  • Quick & easy assembly
  • Good value for the price

Cons

  • Not real wood
  • Small (obviously)

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, then you probably heard the name “Sauder” pop up every now and then.

They’re one of my favorite home office furniture brands – and this elegant Cherry finish bookcase is a good example why.

Setting it up is a pretty straightforward process.

Tip 1: I do suggest reading the instructions carefully before you roll up your sleeves.

Tip 2: Don’t tighten the screws too much

Needless to say, if you’re planning to store the library of congress in that little bookcase, you’ll fail miserably.

You should get this 2-shelf bookcase for one of two reasons:

  1. You want a nice, decorative bookcase that blends in nicely with your other furniture
  2. You need a minimal bookcase to store a few books here and there (and if it happens to be “eye-candy”, all the better)
  3. A combination of the two

(OK, OK, three reasons…)

Otherwise, I suggest you either skip this one and go with something bigger (or get several of these).

Our Rating: 

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Vintage Industrial Wood 5-Tier Home Office Retro Bookcase

Retro Brown 5 Tier Home Office Bookcase

Pros

  • Beautiful contemporary + vintage design
  • Easy to put together
  • Well-crafted & sturdy

Cons

  • Shelves aren’t made of real wood
  • Instructions aren’t the best
  • Pricey

One of the best things about working from home is that you get to decorate your own home office.

And if you’re just setting up (or redecorating) your home office, then it’s time you put your creative chops on display and show everyone what you’re made of!

Don’t worry, I’ll hold your hand through the process (well, virtually anyway).

A beautiful & engaging work environment is one of the key factors for being productive, getting sh*t done, and doing that with a big smile on your face.

I’m guessing you already got a desk (if not, you can choose a nice, contemporary home office desk right here)… so now it’s time to get a matching contemporary bookshelf that’ll put an even bigger smile on your face when you take breaks!

Note: You’ll obviously need to fill the bookshelf with some interesting books… don’t worry, we’ll get to that in one of the upcoming posts.

Kind of like Homissue’s beautiful vintage bookshelf.

Hang on: How can a home office books be contemporary and vintage at the same time?

The answer: high-quality industrial wood + wooden veneer + sleek steel frame = one stylish looking bookshelf.

Sure, the assembly instructions aren’t the best, but thankfully it’s easy enough to figure it out.

Tip: When you put it together, I suggest you assemble the bookshelf first before you tighten the bolts.

And even though the shelves aren’t made of real wood – the veneer looks so great you wouldn’t be able to tell the difference.

Our Rating: 

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Folding Home Office Bookshelf Storage

Top “No-Assembly” Bookshelf

Folding Home Office Bookshelf Storage

Pros

  • Foldable
  • Very attractive
  • No assembly needed
  • Large shelf space
  • Great packaging (reduces the likelihood of shipping damage)

Cons

  • Smaller than the average bookshelf
  • Not real wood

In case it’s not clear from the picture – this is a foldable home office bookshelf (viva sarcasm).

Seriously though, there’s a reason why Coavas goes above and beyond to mention that – is because having a folding bookshelf is freakin’ useful.

Think about it:

  • There’s 0 assembly required.
  • If you ever move out – you won’t need to hire a special task force to move the bookshelf.
  • You can easily place it anywhere and move it around: from the home office to the living room, to the bathroom (gotta read something while you’re sitting in there), and back.

And trust me – if it weren’t for the big books you’ll probably stack up in this bookshelf, you’d really want to move it around (or duplicate it): it looks phenomenal.

I’m not surprised this bookshelf is so popular.

Our Rating: 

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Sauder Five Shelf Bookcase in Abbey Oak Finish

Five Shelf Bookcase In Abbey Oak Finish

Pros

  • Adjustable shelves
  • Looks good (aesthetically pleasing)
  • Lots of shelf space
  • Strong and sturdy

Cons

  • Bad packaging (might get damaged in shipping)
  • Hard to assemble
  • Not real wood

Sauder returns…This time with a much bigger bookcase – in case you found the previous one too small.

Just like most of Sauder’s furniture, this one looks fantastic once it’s assembled (we’ll get to that part in a second).

The quality is excellent, the prices are fair and the sturdiness is what you’d expect from Sauder.

However… this time Sauder dropped the ball on a couple of crucial things.

I hate to play Devil’s advocate (especially since Sauder usually nails it), but my readers come first, so here goes…

The packaging is, in one word: weak. That means your bookcase will probably have a “rough ride” on the way to your house. It isn’t nearly as protected as it should be, given its size.

Then, if all goes well with the shipping –  you’re up for another challenging task: assembling it.

Here’s the deal: this thing is a beast.

I DO NOT recommend you try to assemble it yourself, especially if you haven’t got any experience putting furniture together. It will cost you a lot of time, sweat and nerves.

Let me put it this way: if it wasn’t for Sauder’s solid reputation, there was no chance in hell this bookshelf would’ve made it on this list.

Our Rating: 

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X-Shape Home Office Ladder Shelves

X Shape Home Office Ladder Shelves

Pros

  • Creative & modern design
  • Quick & easy assembly
  • Cheap

Cons

  • Little shelf space
  • Not as sturdy as “traditional” bookshelves

Half bookshelf, half ladder, half decoration piece…

[hold on, that’s 150%… oh well, I always sucked at math]

Look around… if you think your home office could use a little “color”, and you could use a creative burst while you work… then this modern X-shaped bookshelf could be that tiny dose of inspiration you need throughout the day.

Tip: Especially if you put a few green plants on it – that’ll help boost your creativity when you’re “stuck” during the day.

Granted, this isn’t quite the full-fledged bookshelf a big shot lawyer needs in his home office.

It’s more of a showpiece… A showpiece an artist can draw inspiration from during his creative work, hoping to catch your next wave of “flow” (from the book “Flow”) and overcome “the resistance” (from the book “The War of Art”).

(both awesome books by the way)

Our Rating: 

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O&K 4-Tier Rustic Wood & Metal Home Office Bookshelves

O&k Rustic Wood Metal Bookshelves

Pros

  • Very stylish
  • Super easy to assemble
  • Adjustable feet (helps stabilize the bookcase)
  • Terrific customer service

Cons

  • Wobbles a little
  • Shelves aren’t made of solid wood

Another stylish bookcase that you’ll never see in any corporate office (or in a home office with no taste, for that matter). Which is a good reason to include it here!

Just like the other modern home office bookshelves, this one is stylish as hell. In fact, so stylish, that most people often can’t help but dedicate at least one shelf for office essentials & decor: printer, plants, Sony PlayStation 4 (my favorite decor)… you name it!

Tip: This bookcase also has more selection. You can choose between different sizes: 2-shelf, 3-shelf and 4-shelf (this one).

One cool feature this bookcase has that is missing from most of the other ones, are the adjustable legs.

There’s nothing more annoying than spending a few hours assembling your new bookcase, only to realize it wobbles.

That’s where the adjustable legs kick in (get it? legs kicking in…). You can adjust your bookcase in case it wobbles and align them so they stand up straight.

Tip: If you tried adjusting the feet and it still wobbles, try putting a felt pad (or something else) under the problematic leg. That’ll do the trick.

Even though the name of this brand is O&K, their home office bookcases are certainly more than just “OK” (talk about a horrible choice of names).

As a matter of fact: The whole company is more than “just OK”. If a problem arises (like a missing bolt, shipping damage etc’) – they’re very responsive and listen to their customers. Way to Go O&K!

Our Rating: 

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Gray Wood Adjustable Desktop Bookshelves

Gray Wood Adjustable Desktop Bookshelves

Pros

  • Adjustable shelves
  • Huge space saver
  • Keeps your desk organized
  • Cheap solution for modest shelving needs

Cons

  • Not a lot of shelf space (obviously)
  • The texture is a little rough

Well, this is awkward…

You might be wondering: “What tha… this isn’t even a real bookshelf! It’s tiny!”

Hang on there, tiger! Stop judging the book(shelf) by its cover, or by its size!

The truth of the matter is: some people simply do NOT need a full-fledged, massive bookshelf taking up their precious home office real estate. Especially not if your home office is small, to begin with.

If you’re not planning to give Bill Gates a run for his money (why would you, the man is worth 91 BILLION dollars), then there’s a good chance you don’t even need a huge bookshelf… a small one will do just fine.

These tiny 2-piece rustic wood bookshelves are both adjustable, and, well, tiny…

Note: By adjustable, I mean that you can play around with the angles to fit your needs.

Is it really worth spending a significant amount of cash on a big home office bookshelf just to fit your tiny little plant and 1 ½ notebooks?

I don’t know, you tell me…

Our Rating: 

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Home Office Folding Bookcase – 4 Shelves

Top Foldable Bookcase

Home Office Folding Bookcase 4 Shelves

Pros

  • Very little assembly required
  • Lightweight & easy to carry around
  • Excellent customer service
  • Terrific packaging (protected in shipping)
  • Made of real wood (not fiberboard)

Cons

  • Smaller than it looks

Stony Edge is doing a LOT of things right that puts them way above most other home office bookcases out there.

Their main goal with this bookcase was simple: their goal was simplicity (pun intended). And I have to say, they hit the nail on the head (so you won’t have to):

  • … Simple assembly
  • … Simple & minimalistic design
  • … Simple bookshelves

Sure, there’s other cool stuff about this bookcase, like the fact that it’s made of real wood (!) as opposed to a lousy fiberboard.

But I’d like to focus on that assembly part because that’s a big one.

One of the biggest pain in the a**es with most home office bookshelves (and furniture in general) is assembling the damn thing.

Thank goodness, this bookcase requires little-to-no assembly (and no tools). It’s almost a “Push of a button” kind of thing.

SNAP! And in a few minutes, you’ll have your bookcase all “up and running” waiting to hold your books for you.

SNAP! And in a few seconds you can fold it, carry it with you, and set up camp anywhere you go (although I’d be careful if you’re planning to light a fire in your camp – it’s made of real wood, so keep it the hell away from the fire)

Snap! … I don’t know what this snap was for. Oh well…

Our Rating: 

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Home Office 3-Shelf Bookcase – Royal Cherry

Home Office 3 Shelf Bookcase Royal Cherry

Pros

  • Cheap
  • Great customer service

Cons

  • Boring design
  • Takes a while to assemble
  • Instructions could be improved

Let’s be clear here: if you were looking for that breathtaking piece of furniture to add to your home office, this isn’t it.

What this is, is a bookshelf. That’s it…

In other words: don’t expect this bookshelf to do anything other than holding your books.

Assembling it is pretty tedious, but that’s a sacrifice you’ll have to make if you prefer keeping costs low.

But once it’s assembled, it should be pretty durable and last you for a while (unless you go all “Tarzan” on it).

But if I’m being completely honest: I personally wouldn’t choose this as my main home office bookshelf. The design bores me to death (and brings back bad memories from my previous corporate job).

But hey, if you just need a bookshelf, any bookshelf, then you don’t need anything more than this.

Our Rating: 

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Casual Home Office Display Rack

Top Budget Bookshelf

Casual Home Office Display Rack

Pros

  • Unique & sleek scalloped edges design
  • Tall
  • Very cheap

Cons

  • Narrow shelves – not a lot of shelf space
  • Too tall for rooms with low ceilings

What’s the first thing that pops out when you look at this casual home office bookcase?

Let me guess… it’s one of these three:

  1. The unique scalloped design
  2. How tall it is
  3. How cheap it is

And you’re right…

But I’ve got to warn you: It’s NOT the most convenient bookshelf to have in your home office…

So what I would say is this:

  • If you could use a “real” home office bookshelf with tons of space to store your books and other office essentials – then you’re better off going with one of the other bookshelves.
  • However, if you don’t need a ton of storage space, and would rather have something that looks awesome – then this is a fantastic choice.

Tip: Especially if you’re looking for a slim bookshelf to fit in the corner of your bedroom or living room.

Our Rating: 

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Final Verdict

Top Bookshelf: 4-shelf Vintage Industrial Bookshelf

Every home office is different. That means every bookshelf fits specific home offices, right? Wrong. This gorgeous bookshelf could fit any design, any office, any room. The number #1 bookshelf award clearly goes to HSH.

Top “No-assembly” Bookshelf: Folding Home Office Bookshelf Storage

If you don’t have the time (or the patience) to spend setting up your bookshelf – good news: YOU. DON’T. HAVE. TO. 

Top Foldable Bookcase: Home Office Folding Bookcase – 4 Shelves

My girlfriend just kicked me out of my own home office (I know, right?). So I’m writing this from my living room. You know what sucks though? My bookcase remained in the home office. If only I had a foldable bookcase like this one…

Top Budget Bookshelf: Casual Home Office Display Rack

Casual, cheap, unique… If you have a narrow space, a narrow budget, and a high enough ceiling – then… scallops baby!

BookshelfProsCons 
Top Bookshelf
4 Shelf Vintage Industrial Bookshelf4 Shelf Vintage Industrial Bookshelf
Pros: Beautiful design, easy to set up, tons of storage spaceCons: Not solid woodOur Rating: 
Get it Here
Top “No-Assembly” Bookshelf
Folding Home Office Bookshelf StorageFolding Home Office Bookshelf Storage
Pros: Foldable, great design, 0 assembly required, tons of space, protective packagingCons: Small, not real woodOur Rating: 
Get it Here
Top Foldable Bookcase
Home Office Folding Bookcase 4 ShelvesHome Office Folding Bookcase 4 Shelves
Pros: Little assembly required, lightweight, great customer service, protective packaging, REAL WOODCons: SmallOur Rating: 
Get it Here
Top Budget Bookshelf
Casual Home Office Display RackCasual Home Office Display Rack
Pros: Sleek scalloped design, tall, very cheapCons: Narrow, too tall for low ceilingsOur Rating: 
Get it Here

Conclusion

Now that you’ve got an awesome new bookshelf, the next step is to stock up with some interesting reading material (I’ll write about my favorite books on my bookshelf for folks working from home sometime soon).

That’s exactly what I did… and even though I’m nowhere near Bill Gates’ 50 books a year, ever since I’ve gotten a brand-new bookshelf in my home office – I’ve been reading way more than I used to before.

Because guess what – now the books are right in front of me…

Now, instead of opening Facebook and mindlessly start scrolling like a cocaine addict, I open a book and mindfully start reading.

And it’s the best feeling ever…

Home Office Bookshelves

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