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I have a number of children's books that have the binding tore or broken. Is there a good way to fix these well but cheaply? A number of them are copyrighted in the 50's and 60's! Is tacky glue an option? Perhaps some kind of glue that doesn't dry solid so the book can bend? The books are like Dr. Suess books and disney books so they are short books.
The way to fix them permanently is to find something called self adhesive end sheets. They are big in the photbook market. You will take these end sheets and staple them to the book block then peel the adhesive tape off and stick them to the insides of the cover.
If you just want to keep the books together and aren't worried about preserving their "collectability" (that is, their value on the collector's market), clear packing tape works wonders. A roll is pretty cheap and will mend a lot of books. Plus, you can cut it to whatever size you need. A lot of my kids' books are used, some not so gently, and I've used clear packing tape for all repairs, soft cover, hard cover, big books, small books. It's also good if you have pages that are ripped. It holds better than Scotch-type tape.
clear packing tape did not stay stuck as the paper is pulpy on my repair attempt.
If its a hardback and the binding is exposed try something called "gorilla glue" find it at Menards, etc. Be very frugal with it . I had some hardbacks with the binding and pages completely off and a little of the gorilla glue and about 12 hours and you could not even tell it was separated. But be warned, a little goes a long way! It is also good for gluing glass, ceramic plastic or just about anything.