Jeremy Lewis

‘The Uncelebrated Hardware of Our Language’

Just My Type: A Book about Fonts


Profile Books 329pp £14.99 order from our bookshop

Books about typography used to be sober, high-minded, elegantly produced affairs, which worked their way chronologically from Gutenberg to Eric Gill via Garamond, Plantin and Baskerville; and more often than not they were written in the days of hot metal, when any publisher worth his salt could tell his em from his en. Just My Type is a very different animal, and a good deal livelier. Simon Garfield covers the ground, but his approach is circuitous rather than historical: he reminds old-timers about John Bull printing sets and the revolutionary implications of Letraset, but is equally well informed about iPods, ‘theme park fonts’ (he is scathing about the hideous typeface designed for the 2012 Olympics), and the care taken by Messrs Obama and McCain to choose typefaces which seemed to reflect their characters and aspirations during the Presidential election campaign.

Sign Up to our newsletter

Receive free articles, highlights from the archive, news, details of prizes, and much more.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • 'One of the reasons for its longevity is that it has virtually nothing to say about science and technology at all,… ,
    • 'The characters in many of these stories are trapped in the obsessive present tense of their own thoughts; in the m… ,
    • 'Libraries, for much of their existence, have embodied in microcosm many of the characteristics of the totalitarian… ,
    • 'Moss and Cynthia buy several properties through which to launder their ill-gotten gains, take lots of drugs, have… ,
    • 'Never mind the imperial cult. This is the cult of Boris. What happened to Rome?' From the LR archive:… ,
    • Thirty-two years ago this month, we published Muriel Spark's short story, 'A Playhouse Called Remarkable' Read it… ,
    • Time travel, bicycles and white horses populate @WomackPhilip's roundup of children's books by @marcussedgwick,… ,