Can someone tell me why...

...some books smell like tobacco? I don't mean the ashtray-scented books that come from smoker's homes, but brand, spanking new books straight from the bookshop than give off a smell similar to a newly opened pouch of fresh pipe tobacco.

It's kind of a nice smell (it reminds me of my grandfather who used to roll his own cigarettes using pipe tobacco), but it seems to me it doesn't belong in books, and I have only ever smelled it on new or new-ish hardcovers.

Comments

Matthew said…
I'm only speculating, but this is my guess. Pipe tobacco often has vanilla, as one usually expects to have some body in the scent of the smoke. The vanilla smell comes from the chemical vanillin, which can be found in many plants in the natural world. My guess is that some glue or other material used in hardcover books contains vanillin, possibly from the wood pulp itself, and this is what you smell. It's just a guess, though.
Bibliophile said…
Thanks, Matthew. It may be a guess, but it's the best explanation I have heard so far.

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