Top critical review
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Strange, superficial overview of type-related topics
on April 19, 2008
I love type, but I lack an educated background on its use. I was so looking forward to learning about such details as when to prefer a sans-serif versus a serif in certain situations, how people react to various different families of faces, prescriptions for when to apply different types of layouts, and so forth.
When I got was a partially complete history lesson on how different types of faces and families evolved, an introduction to grid layouts with very little prescriptive advice, and weirdly, a brief editorial primer teaching how to mark up the printed page with pen.
To its credit, the book is full of examples of layouts. As I read, I expected any minute I'd penetrate the entry level "Here we see an example of a layout" to the real meat, but it never ever happened.
To the author's credit, the book was meticulously assembled and was clearly the product of a great deal of effort. And, this is not the first design-related book I've discovered that lacked meaningful depth.
But to any practicing designer looking for some guidance for taking their use of type to the next level, or understanding beyond his own innate instincts when to apply certain techniques, this is not the book for you. In fact, I'm not sure who this book is for.