Over at The Last Bookstore, we discovered a secret ingredient for cleaning sticker glue on books: lighter fluid!

Everybody in the GalleyCat audience knows the problem. You buy a new or used book, but somebody left an annoying sticker on the cover. You can scrape it off, but bits of glue will haunt the book forever.

Check it out: “Each Tuesday, book archivist Emily comes in to cover the art books we get with Brodart book coverings–a smooth, protective plastic that allows them to stay pristine.  Before she does that, she uses lighter fluid to clean them.  She swears it’s the most effective thing she’s found for removing the sticky, gummy mystery goop that old books can acquire.”

UPDATE: Reader Mira Draken added a note of caution: ” Indeed lighter fluid can clean books- but you might try a hidden corner first, it damages some colors.”