The Casual Optimist

Books, Design and Culture

Midweek Miscellany


Canadian illustrator and typographer Darren Booth at From The Desks Of

There’s on more on Darren’s cover for An Object of Beauty on his blog.

Misery — Editor and author Diana Athill profiled at The Telegraph (via PD Smith):

‘I have always been a watcher,’ she says. ‘Of myself in particular. Even at times of acute unhappiness I’ve watched myself being unhappy. I also think I’m one of those people who has never been wholly involved in an emotion, but then I think a lot of writers are like that.’

Is Modernism Boring? — Rhys Tranter at The Spectator Book Blog:

If modernism means anything in Woolf or Joyce, it is the struggle for what it means to be modern. Both present us with an array of fascinatingly complex characters, seeking to question their identity and their place in the modern age. Language becomes a character, too, an all-pervading texture that sets the mood of each story, and playfully subverts the ABC plots of yesteryear. Amid a proliferation of new technologies, of political upheaval and social change, Joyce, Woolf and the literary modernists actively interrogate the way we perceive the world around us, in ways still relevant today. In this way, modernism is not something we leave on our shelves and neglect to pick up. Modernism is that which speaks to modern life.

What’s the Worst that can Happen? — Gary Shteyngart, author of the dystopian Super Sad True Love Story, interviewed at the new and great looking book blog Full Stop:

Most people don’t care anymore because they’re beyond caring. The endless cult of self-expression that makes people stream or write about themselves day in and day out without any kind of filter. If you write a novel, you’re often writing about yourself as well, but you’re clearly filtering it through a bunch of things, not least of which is technique. So it’s not an entirely plausible future, but in some ways it could be. What if all the worst things happen politically, socially, and in terms of our literacy?

Top 10 fonts of 2010 lists from You Work For Them and Fontwerk (Google Translate version here).

And finally…

The 50 best comic book covers of 2010 as chosen by Robot 6

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  1. Hey, nice post. Darren Booth is a talent. Great style.
    Hey, who designed the cover of that Waterproof Bible you are reading? It’s fun. Totally different style and idea.

  2. The Waterproof Bible is nicely done. The designer is Kelly Hill at Random House Canada. The title is printed in gold right onto the cover; the wave pattern with the author’s name at the bottom is on a paper wrap.

  3. wow. that is very nice. I thought it was just printed… That really takes it up a notch conceptually.

  4. Pingback: The feeling « LET ME BE FRANK

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