Just My Type: A Book about FontsJust My Type: A Book about Fonts by Simon Garfield

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

More broad than deep, this book is a fascinating exploration of types, fonts, or whatever you want to call them. It’s a topic I have a mild interest in, but reading the book has definitely made me more aware of font choices in books, signs, and on websites. (It’s also made me annoyingly aware of my own handwriting.) I’d recommend it to anyone who finds the topic interesting – it’s got plenty of visual examples and the style isn’t too technical.

One minor quibble is that Garfield will often display the name of a font using that font, making it easy to see which qualities he’s talking about, and he’ll occasionally display single letters in that font while discussing them – but not always. It was frustrating to read about “font X’s fascinating capital Q” but not be able to visualize it – more consistency here would have been nice.

Enjoyable as the book was, it also made me realize why I tend to stick to fiction – I prefer an emotional arc and some rich characters in my books, and all the fonts in the world can’t quite make up for the lack of them. This just means that it takes me longer to get through non-fiction, since I don’t feel compelled to pick it up and find out what happens. But that’s just me.

Source: my public library

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