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Just My Type: A Book about Fonts

by

Just My Type: A Book about Fonts Cover

ISBN13: 9781592407460
ISBN10: 1592407463
All Product Details

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A delightfully inquisitive tour that explores the rich history and the subtle powers of fonts.

Fonts surround us every day, on street signs and buildings, on movie posters and books, and on just about every product that we buy. But where do fonts come from and why do we need so many? Who is behind the businesslike subtlety of Times New Roman, the cool detachment of Arial, or the maddening lightness of Comic Sans (and the movement to ban it)? Simon Garfield embarks on a mission to answer these questions and more, and reveal what may be the very best and worst fonts in the world.

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, Garfield unravels our age old obsession with the way our words look. Just My Type investigates a range of modern mysteries, including how Helvetica took over the world, what inspires the seemingly ubiquitous use of Trajan on bad movie posters, and what makes a font look presidential, male or female, American, British, German, or Jewish. From the typeface of Beatlemania to the graphic vision of the Obama campaign, fonts can signal a musical revolution or the rise of an American president. This book is a must-read for the design conscious that will forever change the way you look at the printed word.

Review:

"This is a smart, funny, accessible book that does for typography what Lynne Truss's best-selling Eats, Shoots and Leaves did for punctuation: made it noticeable for people who had no idea they were interested in such things." Janet Maslin, The New York Times

Review:

"A deliriously clever and entertaining book." The Boston Globe

Review:

"Garfield's romping history (with multitype text) is zestfully informative." Booklist

Review:

"[A] lively romp through the history of fonts. Garfield's evocative prose...entices us to see letters instead of just reading them." Publishers Weekly

Review:

"With wit, grace and intelligence, Simon Garfield tells the fascinating stories behind the letters that we encounter every day on our street corners, our bookstore shelves, and our computer screens." Michael Bierut, Partner, Pentagram Design, New York, and author of Seventy-Nine Short Essays on Design

Review:

"Informative, delightful — and essential reading for word geeks everywhere." The Seattle Times

Review:

"Lively...intriguing...a cheeky book about the human side and our reaction to fonts." Seattle Post Intelligencer

Review:

"Highly entertaining … Garfield takes readers on a rollicking tour of the world of typography, from book jackets to road signs, TV shows to computers." USA Today

Review:

"Reading Simon Garfield's Just My Type can transform your daily life into an endless quest for knowledge of the typefaces in which signs, books, magazines, newspapers, etc. are set." Washington Post

Review:

"Irresistible." The Huffington Post

Review:

"A thoroughly entertaining, well-informed tour of typefaces." Kirkus

Review:

"Garfield has a light touch and moves effortlessly among various aspects of typography past and present....Highly recommended to all, whether or not you feel predisposed to like this kind of thing! Eye-opening and mind-expanding!" Library Journal

Review:

"Whether you're a graphic designer or a layperson with no background in this area, reading what Garfield has to say will change the way you perceive the written word forever." The Los Angeles Times

Review:

"Funny and fascinating, irreverent and playful yet endlessly illuminating, the book is an absolute treat for the type-nerd, design history geek, and general lover of intelligent writing with humor." The Atlantic

Synopsis:

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.

About 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 Galeria.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 2 comments:

Heather Coppley, January 18, 2014 (view all comments by Heather Coppley)
For those who cares about font, this book is a delight. Garfield does a solid job over going over the history of lettersetting, explaining changes in technology, and profiling prolific designers. The asterisked footnotes make additional information immediately available to the reader. The end notes, however, provide more avenues for learning and play (there are a few online games built around font.) And the introduction by iconic book cover designer Chip Kidd is a rich appetizer.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
twicelovedbooks, January 8, 2013 (view all comments by twicelovedbooks)
You've just finished Robin Sloan's brilliant "Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore" and your curiousity is piqued by Gerritszoon, that singular typeface. Where to turn for research? Why, look no further than Simon Garfield's last word about Fonts and Typefaces, "Just My Type". Garfield's book will appeal to booklovers, word geeks, and designers in equal measure. It could be considered the nerds' answer to all things in print. But Simon Garfield's sense of humor wins the day and all those wonderful typefaces make their appearance. Is Gerritszoon present and accounted for? Better check.
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View all 2 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9781592407460
Author:
Garfield, Simon
Publisher:
Gotham Books
Subject:
General Reference
Copyright:
Edition Description:
B-Hardcover
Publication Date:
20120931
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
from 12
Language:
English
Illustrations:
BandW photos and illustrations t/o
Pages:
384
Dimensions:
8.56 x 6 x 1.21 in 1.36 lb
Age Level:
from 18

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Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Art » Design History
Arts and Entertainment » Art » Sale Books
Arts and Entertainment » Art » Typography
Arts and Entertainment » Sale Books
Computers and Internet » Desktop Publishing » General
Featured Titles » Culture
Featured Titles » General
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History and Social Science » Current Affairs » General
Reference » General

Just My Type: A Book about Fonts New Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$17.00 In Stock
Product details 384 pages Gotham Books - English 9781592407460 Reviews:
"Review" by , "This is a smart, funny, accessible book that does for typography what Lynne Truss's best-selling Eats, Shoots and Leaves did for punctuation: made it noticeable for people who had no idea they were interested in such things."
"Review" by , "A deliriously clever and entertaining book."
"Review" by , "Garfield's romping history (with multitype text) is zestfully informative."
"Review" by , "[A] lively romp through the history of fonts. Garfield's evocative prose...entices us to see letters instead of just reading them."
"Review" by , "With wit, grace and intelligence, Simon Garfield tells the fascinating stories behind the letters that we encounter every day on our street corners, our bookstore shelves, and our computer screens." Michael Bierut, Partner, Pentagram Design, New York, and author of Seventy-Nine Short Essays on Design
"Review" by , "Informative, delightful — and essential reading for word geeks everywhere."
"Review" by , "Lively...intriguing...a cheeky book about the human side and our reaction to fonts."
"Review" by , "Highly entertaining … Garfield takes readers on a rollicking tour of the world of typography, from book jackets to road signs, TV shows to computers."
"Review" by , "Reading Simon Garfield's Just My Type can transform your daily life into an endless quest for knowledge of the typefaces in which signs, books, magazines, newspapers, etc. are set."
"Review" by , "Irresistible."
"Review" by , "A thoroughly entertaining, well-informed tour of typefaces."
"Review" by , "Garfield has a light touch and moves effortlessly among various aspects of typography past and present....Highly recommended to all, whether or not you feel predisposed to like this kind of thing! Eye-opening and mind-expanding!"
"Review" by , "Whether you're a graphic designer or a layperson with no background in this area, reading what Garfield has to say will change the way you perceive the written word forever."
"Review" by , "Funny and fascinating, irreverent and playful yet endlessly illuminating, the book is an absolute treat for the type-nerd, design history geek, and general lover of intelligent writing with humor."
"Synopsis" by , 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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