Animtion Books

Frank Thomas, Ollie Johnston; "Disney Animation: The Illusion of Life"
Hyperion Press ISBN 0-7868-6070-7
Must Have. Arguably the best book on drawn animation ever published. They've also done Too Funny For Words, about cartoon gags; Bambi: The Story and the Film; and The Disney Villains. Thomas and Johnston worked as animators on all the major Disney features through The Fox and the Hound.
Richard Williams; "The Animator's Survival Kit"
Faber & Faber ISBN: 0571205976
Must Have.  Brand new book from Richard Williams. Based on his famous Animation Masterclass.
Preston Blair; "Animation" & "How To Animate Film Cartoons" also published together in one book as "Cartoon Animation"
Walter Foster Publishing
Must Have. These two books/book are in print and inexpensive. Probably the best investment in animation books you'll make.
Brian Lemay; "Designing Cartoon Characters For Animation", "Layout and Design Made Amazingly Simple" & "The Advanced Layout and Design Workbook"
Sheridan College Text books.
If you want to do Cel/2D animation GET THESE BOOKS. These are a must have for animation students. They cover topics I have not seen in any other published book, like line quality and creating good model sheets. You can order them from the author at $25, $35 and $50respectively. his email is
Zach Schwartz and Jim Macaulay; "And Then What Happened"
This book is 120 pages and costs $15.00 U.S. It deals with storytelling for animation. The book goes through 25 examples from a variety of different cartoons and analyses them thoroughly. Available from Brian Lemay
Shamus Culhane; "Animation From Script To Screen"
St. Martin's Press
A good "how-to" book by a veteran of Disney, Fleischer, Lantz and TV commercials. It's not only about animation and animating, but about the creative process in general. I think the animation projects in it are lame, but substituting them with something of your own works well.
Tony White; "The Animator's Workbook"
Watson-Guptill Publications
A book by someone who learned from Grim Natwick, Art Babbitt and Richard Williams. An explanation of the shift-and-trace inbetweening, which none of these other books go into. Covers marking breakdowns for assistants and inbetweeners. Also, illustrated chapters devoted to Headturns, Walks, Runs, Exaggerated Action, Dialogue, and Effects animation. A lot of this information obviously came directly from the Art Babbitt lectures. I don't like the fact that he only mentions using using the top pegs to animate. Almost nobody does this in a professional studio these days, and I would think it's a hard habit to break. Also the description of weight in this book is weak, or just all out wrong. Don't get me wrong this is a great book, it just shouldn't be your only animation book.
Harold Whitaker, John Halas; "Timing For Animation"
Focal Press
It's hard to find, but well worth having. It's not the only Animation book you should have, but it's a great addition to an animators library. Basically It's about the mechanics of timing and drawing. Authors are from Halas and Bachelor studio in England. Last I checked you could get it from Amazon UK.

Drawing Books

The Vilppu Drawing Manual, one hundred and sixty pages of instructive drawings and text, in full living black and white, from the American Animation Institute's master instructor GLENN VILPPU. The manual is a twelve-chapter basic drawing course covering gesture, construction, anatomy and lighting. It is the same material Glenn teaches at the AAI, Disney and Warner Bros. Feature Animation.
You can now order this online from the AWN store
Kimon Nicolaides; "The Natural Way To Draw"
Houghton Mifflin
A famous "how-to-draw" book recommended by people like Culhane and Chuck Jones.
Gary Faigin; "The Artist's complete guide to facial expression"
A Great book about the minute details of facial expression, and what muscles do what. It's also a great book for learning to draw heads/faces in in general.
Ken Hultgren; "The Art of Animal Drawing" : Construction, Action Analysis, Caricature.
Dover Publications; ASIN: 0486274268
This is a good book and inexpensive. This guy was a Disney animator and did a lot of work on Bambi.
John, Raynes; "Figure Drawing and Human Anatomy for the Artist"
ASIN: 1555216099
This is one of the better Anatomy books, but it's hard to find.
Composing Pictures by Donald Graham
Published by Van Nostrand Reinhold. Publication date: Hardback 1970, Paperback 1983
I finally found a copy of this book, and will read it soon. Don Graham was the resident drawing instructor at Disney during the golden age and everyone who has read this book raves about it. The problem is that it's extremely rare, and most copies go for over $400.  Keep looking and you might get a deal (like me).

Film Making Books

Steven D. Katz; "Film Directing Shot by Shot"
This is a great book for anyone wanting to do Animation, storyboards, or Layout. It's intended for live action, but just about everything applies to Animation.