Text Patterns - by Alan Jacobs

Monday, March 30, 2009

I saw that book review. . .

This is Alison Bechdel's review in the NYT of Jane Vandenburgh's A Pocket History of Sex in the Twentieth Century:

You can see a larger version here.

Why shouldn't there be more of this kind of thing? I can imagine that there would be many books — not all, not most, but many — that would be very well served by graphic reviews. (Along these lines, see my review of the graphic version of The 9/11 Report.)

 UPDATE: Thanks to commenter Mark, here's Ward Sutton's review of Roth's latest. It's a lot less substantive and useful than Bechdel's work: there are only a handful of words, and the images add no information. Bechdel's words and images work together much better and provide a denser and more meaningful experience for the reader. 


  • Ward Sutton just had a graphic review of Philip Roth's latest in the Village Voice—can't get the link to work in this comment box, though, sorry.

  • tony Comstock said...

    A design professor whom I remember very fondly ran his course on the predicate that words are often not the best way to communicate ideas. We spend a lot of time on maps, diagrams, and other sorts of printed communications; sometimes augmented with words and numbers, sometimes not.

    I used Linx as an excuse to introduce myself to the woman who became my wife, but we made our fortune from Mosaic.

  • Augmented Ballot said...

    Sorry I can't cite specific examples just now, but I know Harvey Pekar (with others illustrating) has done a bit of this over the years.

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