Why I’m Obsessed with Twelve South MacBook Cases

Turn your laptop into art

Key Takeaways

  • Twelve South's BookBook cases are the best protection for my MacBook I’ve ever used. 
  • These pricey cases look like beautifully aged antique leather books. 
  • It’s just big enough to protect my laptop but not so big that it’s too heavy to carry.
A laptop sitting next to a BookBook cover on a stone surface.

Sascha Brodsky / Lifewire

Most laptop cases are either dull or ugly, but after years of searching, I’ve discovered my favorite line of leather covers to keep my MacBook safe. 

Twelve South makes MacBook cases that look like beautifully aged antique leather books. The cases are pricey, but they have kept my MacBook ding-free and might even have prevented a robbery. 

Unlike most cases, the Twelve South versions actually look better with use. They acquire a unique patina that personalizes the cover and makes it your own. Light scratches in the leather give it character, rather than looking messy.  

"My MacBook is an essential part of my life, and I say it deserves to look like an antique leather book."

Pricey but Unique

I’m using BookBook, which costs $99.99. This model features an interior pocket for storing papers, as well. Somehow, using the case doesn’t feel bulky or heavy, even though it’s 14.9-inches x 10.4-inches x 1-inch. I had the same model for my previous 13-inch MacBook Pro, and it performed just as well. 

It’s hard to explain just how great the BookBook looks and feels. The genuine leather is beautifully crafted, and the longer I own it, the more I notice the careful details that went into its design, like the subtle logo on the spine.

It’s just big enough to protect my laptop, but not so big that it’s too heavy to carry. 

The inside of the BookBook is lined with microfiber to protect the surface of your Mac from scratches. When you zip the BookBook closed, your laptop is shielded between two hardback book covers, both of which have reinforced corners, while the spine is rigid and crush resistant.

Each BookBook is made from premium leather, and the company claims that they are handcrafted, ensuring no two are alike.

Also impressive are the dual zippers with leather pulls that, at first glance, look like bookmarks. Unlike most other zippered cases, these closures have never failed me, even after years of use. 

The best part about using the BookBook case is that it’s as much a disguise as it is a case. I used to do a lot of writing in coffee shops, and while people often asked about the leather book I was carrying, they never guessed there was a computer inside. 

I credit my BookBook with saving my laptop entirely. A few years ago, I was in New York City’s SoHo neighborhood when I left my MacBook on a cafe table. 

I was only gone for a minute, but someone had run out of the cafe after having grabbed several laptops. The thief skipped my BookBook-clad MacBook, and I think it was because he didn’t realize it was an expensive gadget inside the cover. 

Less-Expensive Alternatives

If you want to dive deep down the antique case rabbit hole, you might also wish to buy the BookBook CaddySack. This case is a miniature version of BookBook’s case for the MacBook, but it’s designed to hold accessories such as cables, chargers, and headphones. 

Twelve South also makes a line of BookBook cases for the iPad, which I’ve tried. These are also beautifully made and look like antique books, but I can’t recommend them in this case.

A bookBook case standing upright next to a MacBook laptop.

Sascha Brodsky / Lifewire

They are too heavy and awkward to use with an iPad that’s designed to be held in your hand. But if you just want a nice-looking case that protects your iPad well, you might want to check these out. 

Of course, spending nearly $100 on a case might strike some people as absurd. A colleague recommends the much less expensive Mosiso laptop case, which looks similar to the BookBook and costs less than $25. Of course, unlike the BookBook, the Mosiso isn’t made of genuine leather. 

There’s also the intriguing-looking Vintage Sleeping Beauty case for laptops, which I haven’t tried, but also resembles an antique book. This one is made of polyester, but only clocks in at $39.99. 

These lower-priced alternatives to the BookBook look tempting. But I’ll be staying loyal to Twelve South. My MacBook is an essential part of my life, and I say it deserves to look like an antique leather book.

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