From New Year’s Resolutions to Secret Codes – Strange Things People Have Found in Books

I just love the idea of second-hand books. You can smell traces of the previous owners on every page mingled with the smell of ink and all so slightly yellowed paper. Second-hand books carry memories, emotions of joy, upset, fear, shock… People leave a piece of themselves behind nestled in the pages of a book, I believe that I do.

Then there are some less subtle things people leave behind in books, like notes. You’re going to want to execute me for my following confession but I once scribbled my 11th Grade Economics textbook full of little notes, jokes, and tips, hoping it would inspire the person who received it after me.

Sort of like my very own Half-Blood Prince Economics Guide. Anti-climax – the textbook got replaced with an updated version the following year so no one got to see my work.

Anyway, here are some of the strangest notes and things people found in books.

Some people found love letters that would inspire even master-of-romance-and-heartache himself, Nicholas Sparks.


I get it, this person slipped this note into his ex-girlfriend’s book, hoping it would win her over. Hopefully, she isn’t a hardcore bookworm otherwise, this mister would have to work on memorizing the difference between your and you’re. 😉


I don’t know who this Kurt Vonnegut writer is but I’m pretty compelled to read one of his books after having read this note.


Mmm… Coffee and a good book. At least this person enjoyed the fuzzies without spilling coffee on the pages, at least I hope so.


Okay, this person just turned the local library into an awesome dating site for bookworms. Only, I’m not sure whether to thank Dash, Cash or Tony for the brilliant idea.


This note just broke my heart. If we combined Nicholas Sparks’ romantic ideas with Dash’s brilliant library dating-site, we could have found this fella a date.

Hey! I don’t see “Buy More Books” on this list.


If we can crack these two messages, we will discover the meaning to life, I’m sure of it. Does anyone know what “RLÍ!” means?

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As readers we own many bookmarks except when the time comes around to use one, we don’t seem to have one at hand so we make use of till slips, chocolate wrappers, a piece of the old supermarket pamphlet advertising a discount on full cream milk…

Here are some of the strangest bookmarks people have found in their books.

I wonder what treasures this key unlocks.

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I’d feel terrible if one of my photos got lost in a book called “A Case of Sardines”. Then again, I’ll add this title to my TBR list because there has got to be something interesting to a book titled, “A Case of Sardines”. Bet it’s a murder mystery.


Ooh, someone’s in trouble.


Yummy! Charles Darwin and a recipe for Cheese Soufflé. Wouldn’t it have been ironic if someone had found this note in a recipe book?


Whaaaat! This person found 100 shares of “Oil Land Company” of San Francisco, dated November 29 1901 on page 1926 of “Sea-Tracks of the Speejacks” by Dale Collins. So adding that title to my TBR list if only to find out what a Speejack is.


Have you found anything interesting in a book recently?



6 thoughts on “From New Year’s Resolutions to Secret Codes – Strange Things People Have Found in Books

  1. Those are fascinating! I’ve never found notes in my used books but it breaks my heart how many I’ve bought that have inscriptions like, “To (grandkid) from Nana and Poppa, hope you love this book as much as we love reading it to you!” Makes me sad to see that they didn’t grow up to love the book 😦

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I owned a used bookstore for years and any time I received a book with an inscription like the one you described I would feel the same way, just terrible that this book did not become something that was cherished by the family.


  2. The most interesting thing ever found in a book at the library where I work was $500. Fortunately we were able to reunite the money with the owner.
    Library patrons often use their book receipts as bookmarks. If left in the book, the next reader can use the list as suggestions for further reading.


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