This morning I reached the end of Just My Type, I sighed and put the book down, wishing it had been a lot longer and I hadn’t read it so quickly. Fonts, can I hear you asking, what’s interesting about them? But you’d be so wrong, all human life is here, Simon Garfield tracks the history of fonts from Gutenberg to almost yesterday. What we read and what we write or view on our computers - how we see politics, advertising, entertainment are all influenced by Bodoni, Optima, Times New Roman and a host of other fonts. The book itself is a splendid piece of publishing and beautifully illustrated in the text with font examples and with additional well chosen illustrations.
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Alphabets: A Miscellany of Letters, David Sacks
The Pencil: A History, Henry Petroski
This is a non-fiction Christmas bestseller. Just My Type is not just a font book, but a book of stories. It is: about how Helvetica and Comic Sans took over the world; about why Barack Obama opted for Gotham, while Amy Winehouse found her soul in 30s Art Deco; about the great originators of type, from Baskerville to Zapf, or people like Neville Brody who threw out the rulebook, or Margaret Calvert, who invented the motorway signs that are used from Watford Gap to Abu Dhabi; about the pivotal moment when fonts left the world of Letraset and were loaded onto computers...and typefaces became something we realised we all have an opinion about. As the Sunday Times review put it, the book is a kind of Eats, Shoots and Leaves for letters, revealing the extent to which fonts are not only shaped by but also define the world in which we live .
'A quirky introduction to fonts... Simon Garfield is careful to tickle as much as he teaches'
(Peter Robins, Daily Telegraph)
'Enthralling... fascinating... strikes a great balance between fact and humour. Reading this book may just change your life
'His book comprises dozens of lovely vignettes, anecdotes that make a potentially dusty subject utterly compelling'
(Independent on Sunday)
Publication date: 22/09/2011
Publisher: Profile Books Ltd
|Publication date:||22nd September 2011|
|Publisher:||Profile Books Ltd|
|Genres:||Biography / Autobiography, eBook Favourites, The Real World,|
|Categories:||Reference works, Humour,|
Simon Garfield was our Guest Editor in October 2012 - click here - to see the books that inspired his writing. Simon Garfield is the author of fourteen acclaimed books of non-fiction including On the Map, Just My Type and The Wrestling. His edited diaries from the Mass Observation Archive, Our Hidden Lives, We Are At War and Private Battles, were bestsellers, and his study of AIDS in Britain, The End of Innocence, won the Somerset Maugham prize. He lives in London and St Ives, Cornwall. Author photo © Sarah LeeMore About Simon Garfield