Warning: Magnifying Glass Needed!

It’s Tuesday morning. You finished your weekend read the evening before and grab a book on your way out to work. Excited about your spontaneous choice – a book you bought a year ago that you’ve almost picked up a dozen times – you settle into the only free seat on the tube, lovingly stroke the gorgeous cover and turn the page…

What you discover is font so teeny, you need a magnifying glass – nay – a microscope to read.

This, my fellow bookworms, is what happened to me this morning. It is such a HUGE pet hate that I have decided to rant about it here instead of talking my colleagues ears off (they stopped listening to me ten minutes ago).

Now, I don’t have terrible problems with my eyesight, nor do I need glasses to read. So I feel it’s fair to say that there is a problem with the font size if I can’t read a book without having it an inch away from my face.

Why the need for tiny font?

I’ve worked at a publishers, and I know the time and effort that is put in to pick the perfect font for a book – one that is easy to read, matches the ‘tone’ of the book (who knew fonts had ‘tones?!’) and one the doesn’t distract the reader.

On some levels, I get it – to typeset a novel you might need to change the font-size. Sometimes it is be harder to fill the extra pages if you used a bigger font. But let’s be realistic here; don’t drop the font size and the leading to a size so tiny I have to hold the page to my nose to read it. I would rather have paid £2 more for a bigger, more readable and thus, more enjoyable book.

Or better yet, give me a warning of what I’m about to read. Books with bigger fonts have labels, why shouldn’t it be the same for books with tiny fonts?

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One thought on “Warning: Magnifying Glass Needed!

  1. Maybe they were embarrassed about what they’ve published…;¬]
    Seriously though, you have my sympathy. It’s bad enough struggling with miniscule print when you’re checking the ingredients lists on food products at the supermarket. When you sit down to read you shouldn’t have to struggle to see the text – it’s bound to compromise your enjoyment of the book.

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