I wanted to make books for my youth writers group. But, I wanted them to be nice books, and I did not want them to fall apart easily. I also wanted them to be able to customize them.
With that being said, apparently everything was in my favor when I happened upon PVA glue at a garage sale. This is the brand I got but I am sure there are other brands that work just as well… Although the price in that link isn’t too bad (not as good as $2 at a garage sale though!)
In the book assembly I took a stack of looseleaf paper and put it in between two pieces of construction paper, with all the edges lining up on one side. I think took a skinny piece of construction paper to make the “spine”. I put the glue on the spine paper and put it around the stacks of paper, along the edges that were lined up. I then put the book under something heavy so they would dry nice and tight.
The books turned out great and the kids loved decorating them! This also saves me on having to keep track of all their stories on looseleaf paper!