Type Rules! is one of the best typography books I’ve seen. Ilene Strizver has done a terrific job of breaking down the components of typography into digestible chapters, each complemented by clear, intelligent exercises. The book is replete with illustrations that serve as solid examples of each concept she articulates; and includes guidance for utilizing current design software. I’d recommend this book hands down to any teacher or student of design — as well as to any practicing typographer seeking to hone their skills.
— Cheryl Towler Weese
Ilene is an amazing and inspiring teacher and this book encompasses her whole teaching experience, with her high level of expertise, passion and understanding of typography.
Type Rules! is loaded with valuable information on the technical and creative aspects of typography. A thorough study of this book will train one’s eye to see type in a whole new way, from easy to understand lessons to portfolio worthy exercises.
An essential must have for any beginner or practicing graphic designer.
— John McSherry
I’ve been searching high and low for an up-to-date book to teach a graduate Typography course. Phil Meggs, Typographic Form and Function ©1985, is a wonderful tool, but recent students were critical of the “dated” nature of some of the material. Type Rules! is a great alternative and/or supplement.
Strizver makes her point clear from the get go — setting type is a craft, not something the computer does for us. Also, type communicates a message all by itself, and many of us are ignorantly communicating the wrong message.
However, the author never gets pompous or overly theoretical. The points she makes are accurate; clearly articulated; ground not only in research, but in a true understanding of type; and are communicated in a contemporary manner.
The “rules” are real-world tools and are applicable for novices as well as professionals. Please note: this book was not created to be a bullet point check off list for administrators and anyone who owns a computer with some fonts to pick from. This is a book for people who work to communicate a message with type, beyond the content of the written word. It’s a well written, easy to read book with lots of fabulous examples from many of the men and women who got typography and typographic design where it is today; all very useful examples for teaching.
— Dina K. Wasmer
A thorough, straightforward and clearly understandable guide to the effective use of typography. Bravo. Strizver certainly knows the ins and outs of typography from the essential basics to some very sophisticated fine points but more importantly, is able to communicate this knowledge in a concise manner that will be useful to a beginner but might even impart some new tips to the experienced aficionado.
— Chris Goblet
When I saw that Ms. Strizver had updated Type Rules! I knew I was going to have to fork over the money and shift some books on my shelf to fit a great new title into the mix. I wasn’t disappointed!
Ilene makes each example easy to understand and includes lots of great illustrations and explanations in her work. AND you can read her entire book without a black felt tip pen needed. I do suggest a yellow highlighter though as there’s lots you’ll want to remember!
— N. Brockmann
Type Rules! 3rd edition is a welcome addition to the literature — linking typography and graphic design in a concise, well-written format that is easily understandable to most readers.
The section on history was particularly useful. While a more comprehensive history of typography can be found in other works, Strizver provides a remarkably complete and useful summary on this topic at the beginning — without overwhelming the reader.
Strizver improves on similar works such as “Desktop Publishing by Design,” and “Dynamics in Document Design” by providing relevant, contemporary examples of typography in graphic design for the reader. The layout introduces readers to various topics in a useful manner — less confusing than similar works such as Colin Wheildon’s “Type and Layout.”
Perhaps the aspect of the book that most distinguishes it from similar works is how the author links typographic concepts with down-to-earth “how-to” instructions. Most works on typography discuss the uses of hanging punctuation and adjusting kerning. Few tell the reader how to do it. Strizver accomplishes this with Mac screen captures that show readers exactly how to integrate these techniques into their writing and designs.
Perhaps the only drawback to the book is the fact that the computer-based instructions focus on Mac users. Strizver also provides some basic information for PC users, but Mac users will get the most out of the “how-to” drills.
However, this book will be useful for all skill levels. For beginners, it provides a complete overview of basic typographic concepts through prose that is very readable. Those familiar with typography will increase their knowledge and even advanced designers could benefit from Strizver’s useful instructions — especially as a reference work. The book also includes exercises at the end of each chapter, making it a candidate as a textbook for teachers of graphic design.
Whether you are an expert, a competent graphic designer, or someone simply looking to improve the appearance of your documents, I would recommend this book.
— David Spencer
This thoughtfully designed and written book works (rules!) on all levels. For someone entirely new to typography the book is approachable while providing a considerable education. For industry professionals who “know everything there is to know” about typography, the book is an excellent creative reference to remind one of a rule or technique long-forgotten or to alarm one with the realization they do not know everything about typography. The visual examples utilized in the book were well-considered and drive home the messages. The Quark tips alone make this book worth purchasing. As a companion to any library of typography or design books, Type Rules! is the designer’s “Elements of Style” — a reference book no one can afford to be without and one that never goes out of style.
— Red Canoe “Canoeist”