Just My Type: A Book about Fonts

Just My Type: A Book about Fonts

3.8 10
by Simon Garfield
     
 

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A hugely entertaining and revealing guide to the history of type that asks, What does your favorite font say about you?

Fonts surround us every day, on street signs and buildings, on movie posters and books, and on just about every product we buy. But where do fonts come from, and why do we need so many? Who is responsible for the staid practicality of

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Overview

A hugely entertaining and revealing guide to the history of type that asks, What does your favorite font say about you?

Fonts surround us every day, on street signs and buildings, on movie posters and books, and on just about every product we buy. But where do fonts come from, and why do we need so many? Who is responsible for the staid practicality of Times New Roman, the cool anonymity of Arial, or the irritating levity of Comic Sans (and the movement to ban it)?

Typefaces are now 560 years old, but we barely knew their names until about twenty years ago when the pull-down font menus on our first computers made us all the gods of type. Beginning in the early days of Gutenberg and ending with the most adventurous digital fonts, Simon Garfield explores the rich history and subtle powers of type. He goes on to investigate a range of modern mysteries, including how Helvetica took over the world, what inspires the seeming ubiquitous use of Trajan on bad movie posters, and exactly why the all-type cover of Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus was so effective. It also examines why the "T" in the Beatles logo is longer than the other letters and how Gotham helped Barack Obama into the White House. A must-have book for the design conscious, Just My Type's cheeky irreverence will also charm everyone who loved Eats, Shoots & Leaves and Schott's Original Miscellany.

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Editorial Reviews

We once thought we were seeing only letters, but now, thanks to the digital age, we know that fonts carry their own meaning. The language of typography, however, never seemed as accessible and amenable as it does in the hands of Simon Garfield. Already hailed as a classic in the UK, his Just My Type makes the tongues of these blocky slots intelligible in unprecedented ways. As one reviewer noted, Garfield's great strength is his storytelling: "His book comprises dozens of lovely vignettes, anecdotes that make a potentially dusty subject utterly compelling." Editor's recommendation.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781592406524
Publisher:
Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
Publication date:
09/01/2011
Pages:
356
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.30(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

What People are saying about this

Maira Kalman
"Did I love this book? My daughter's middle name is Bodoni. Enough said."
-Jessica Kerwin Jenkins
"Simon Garfield reveals an invisible world behind the printed word... the lives of the designers and the letters they've created have never been more clearly detailed with so much flair."
From the Publisher
"A lively companion to books such as Robert Bringhurst's essential Elements of Typographic Style (1992) and John Lewis's classic Typography: Design and Practice." —-Kirkus Starred Review
Lynne Truss
"There is even a photograph of a quick brown fox literally jumping over a lazy dog. What a clever, clever book."
Janet Maslin
“This is a smart, funny, accessible book that does for typography what Lynne Truss’s best-selling Eats, Shoots & Leaves did for punctuation: made it noticeable for people who had no idea they were interested in such things.”
Chip Kidd
"Whether you're a hardcore typophile or a type-tyro, there's something here for you: be it the eye-opening revelations of Eric Gill's utter and complete perversity, or the creation of the typeface that helped Mr. Obama gain entrance to the White House."
Jessica Kerwin Jenkins
"Simon Garfield reveals an invisible world behind the printed word... the lives of the designers and the letters they've created have never been more clearly detailed with so much flair."

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Meet the Author

Simon Garfield is the author of twelve acclaimed books of nonfiction. He lives in London and St. Ives, Cornwall, and currently has a soft spot for Requiem Fine Roman and HT Gelateria.

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