If you're looking for a simple and inexpensive way to store and display books, consider mounting spice racks to the wall. These front-facing bookshelves use IKEA Bekvam wood spice racks that cost $2.49 each.
Photo remixed from the original from Domestic Simplicity.
You can mount several of these (or similar spice racks, perhaps) on the wall for a very appealing book display. Lillian at Domestic Simplicity uses this idea for children's books and says that having the full covers visible and at arm's reach really encourages her kids to grab the books.
For adults, you could also adapt this idea to display magazines or coffee table books. It just seems like a clever space-saving storage and decorating idea.