Biting into the Past

Among the things I love about books (and by books I mean ones made of paper not electronic Kindle do-hickeys, or audiobooks, which I have to admit I DO love), besides the smell of the crisp paper, the heft of the novel in my hand and, of course, being drawn into a well-told story, is the typeface. I love a good typeface, and well, honestly, who doesn’t?

I’ve got Diana Gabaldon’s latest Historical novel An Echo In the Bone. It’s a fair chunk of book, 814 pages, I am eager to gobble up in a day an a half. Besides being a fan of reading acknowledgement pages, I adore when an author makes a note about the book being set in such and such typeface. It’s a special thing when the history of the typeface is given. No, really it is!  Where would books be without the orginal heavy Gothic typeface like Bastarda and Schwabacher?  Sure, they were challenging to read–have any of you ever read Gutenberg–but they gave way to the Latin-styled to Roman types and those babies were way easier on the eyes. Any time you pick up a book to read, it’s been set in a font that had it’s roots back in ancient times.

Yes, that’s right! Reading a book, your favourite way to escape or relax,  whether you like it or not, whether you believe studying anything based in the Humanities is a waste of time, you have to understand It’s all about HISTORY people! 

You know me. I’m gadget happy. But guess what? I am such a massive fan of typeface on paper, that I don’t know if I’ll ever cross that line to e-books. I’ve read a few, but I found them difficult to… watch? It’s the screen you see, as well as the font. My eyes burn and dry out looking at an LCD the same way they do when I I sit in front of a computer all day. When I read a novel, I prefer to touch history as opposed to a touch-screen. I want my, I want my, I want my typeface. 

Bring on the Galliard based on the sixteenth-century typefaces of Frenchman Robert Granjon!

One thought on “Biting into the Past

  1. Fonts

    A note to you, OB: Alyson has a t-shirt eblazoned with one word… helvetica (in that inimitable font). I have one that shares meine Name. Check it out. It’s cute!

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