The 10 Best Gun Books

Updated July 30, 2017 by Brett Dvoretz

10 Best Gun Books
Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive
We spent 18 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top selections for this wiki. Whether you are a collector, an historian, a repairer or simply looking for some instruction, our selection of fascinating gun books includes something that will definitely pique your interest. With editions covering the safe handling and use of handguns to comprehensive catalogs detailing current price trends for thousands of models, you're sure to find the information you need right here. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best gun book on Amazon.

10. Treasures of the NRA Museum

Treasures of the NRA Museum will delight both gun collectors and enthusiasts alike. It features nearly 300 of the most important and valuable guns from the museum that date as far back as the 1600s, including guns used by King James II and Napoleon Bonaparte.
  • very well-researched history
  • even includes some gatling guns
  • the binding isn't very durable
Publisher Supica, Jim
Model n/a
Weight 3.2 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

9. Book of Combat Handgunnery

In addition to the history and evolution of guns, practicality in the real world is also important. The Book of Combat Handgunnery helps prepare you for life-threatening situations with expert guidance, so you're ready when you need to act quickly.
  • teaches valuable skills
  • covers legal aspects of self-defense
  • not much info on small caliber guns
Publisher Gun Digest
Model n/a
Weight 1.3 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

8. The Illustrated History of Firearms

Compiled by staff members from the NRA National Firearms Museum with hands-on gun experience and skills, The Illustrated History of Firearms focuses on the evolution of portable weaponry, from the earliest muskets to the most modern machine guns.
  • a total of 304 pages
  • discusses sighting devices
  • contains a lot of typos
Publisher Supica, Jim
Model n/a
Weight 3.7 pounds
Rating 4.4 / 5.0

7. Book of Centerfire Rifles

For the true rifle aficionado, the gun digest Book of Centerfire Rifles provides the definitive guide for the DIY disassembly, repair, and reassembly of some of the world's most popular centerfire rifles. It includes step-by-step instructions for up to 68 models.
  • instructions are easy to understand
  • perfect for gunsmiths
  • doesn't have a lot of color images
Publisher Gun Digest Books
Model n/a
Weight 3.4 pounds
Rating 3.6 / 5.0

6. American Gun

American Gun was written by famed sniper Chris Kelly, who served four tours in Iraq and also wrote American Sniper, so he definitely knows what he is talking about. It covers 10 of the most iconic guns in American history and the heroes who carried them.
  • bonus chapter on more guns
  • teaches a lot of interesting history
  • very engaging read
Publisher imusti
Model n/a
Weight 5.6 ounces
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

5. The Illustrated World Encyclopedia of Guns

The Illustrated World Encyclopedia of Guns covers everything from basic handguns to complex submachine guns with high quality images of almost every one discussed. There are also brief descriptions of each that make it an easy read.
  • appeals to enthusiasts of all levels
  • good reference book
  • doesn't include any shotguns
Publisher imusti
Model n/a
Weight 1.6 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

4. Firearms: An Illustrated History

Published in collaboration with the Smithsonian Institute, Firearms: An Illustrated History offers detailed information on 300 guns spanning a 700-year period of gun making, from the origin of the pistol and rifle to the most modern machine guns and revolvers.
  • extensive virtual tours
  • photos are crisp and attractive
  • contains 2 removable prints
Publisher DK ADULT
Model n/a
Weight 4.4 pounds
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

3. Standard Catalog of Military Firearms

The Standard Catalog of Military Firearms details thousands of guns that have been produced from 1870 up until the present day. It also has over 1,500 high-quality photos of weapons and a unique section on war trophy documents.
  • includes updated handgun prices
  • ideal for collectors and historians
  • author is a master gunsmith
Publisher Peterson, Phillip
Model n/a
Weight 2.2 pounds
Rating 4.6 / 5.0

2. Shooter's Bible, 108th Edition

The Shooter's Bible, 108th Edition contains guns from nearly every major manufacturer and has been published annually for over 75 years, so you know it is a reputable guide. It has well-detailed charts of the various types of available bullets and hand-loading projectiles.
  • manufacturer suggested retail prices
  • contains a lot of gun terminology
  • great gift for active gun buyers
Publisher Skyhorse Publishing
Model n/a
Weight 2.3 pounds
Rating 4.6 / 5.0

1. Blue Book of Gun Values

With roughly 30,000 model descriptions and almost 200,000 prices, the Blue Book of Gun Values is one of the most comprehensive guides available. This recent 38th edition includes updated market trends and values for the most common firearms.
  • covers over a thousand manufacturers
  • written by a recognized authority
  • details many specialty guns
Publisher Blue Book Publications,
Model n/a
Weight 3.7 pounds
Rating 4.6 / 5.0

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Last updated on July 30, 2017 by Brett Dvoretz

A wandering writer who spends as much time on the road as behind the computer screen, Brett can either be found hacking furiously away at the keyboard or perhaps enjoying a whiskey and coke on some exotic beach, sometimes both simultaneously, usually with a four-legged companion by his side. He hopes to one day become a modern day renaissance man.


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