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Book design for children's reading

A new book by Sue Walker

Book design for children's reading

This new publication’s starting point is that children learning to read deserve high-quality reading books and materials. In achieving this the visual characteristics – the typeface and the way it is used, and the illustrations – are key to determining ease of reading and motivation.

This illustrated account looks at the factors that have influenced the design of books for teaching young children to read, including educational directives and reports, legibility research, methods of teaching reading, the availability of typographic resources and the economic constraints faced by publishers.

The design of books for teaching reading is influenced by the views of teachers and educationists as well as the craft tradition of compositors and printers.

The book includes and annotated timeline that shows examples of reading books published from the 1890s to the end of the twentieth century.


Sue Walker, Book design for children’s reading: typography, pictures, print, London: St Bride Foundation, 2013

Available online from St Bride Library Shop