Book Review:
Stop Stealing Sheep & find out how type works, 2nd ed.

Stop Stealing Sheep & find out how type works, 2nd. ed, by Erik Spiekermann and E. M. Ginger. 188 pp. Adobe Press, 2003. $30.

A best–seller since it was first published in 1993, Stop Stealing Sheep has been widely hailed as a classic handbook on typography. Now the second edition is here, updated and revised with coverage of new type faces, new technology, and how to choose the best type for the web and for monitors of different sizes. Written by two world-renowned type experts, Stop Stealing Sheep is an informative, entertaining, thought-provoking and stylishly presented guide “for people who want to communicate more effectively with type.”

Spiekermann and Ginger discuss the history and characteristics of type, understanding typefaces, choosing type for a particular purpose, the importance of space between letters and around words, and rules of effective placement on the page. The reader is advised that “Good designers learn all the rules before they start to break them.”

The book’s enigmatic title refers to a quote from type designer Frederic Goudy, who once remarked with disgust, “Anyone who would letterspace lowercase would steal sheep.” Stop Stealing Sheep is a must-read for graphic designers, and is recommended for anyone who wants to use type effectively.

– Elsa Travisano

Copyright ©2003 by Elsa Travisano. This article appeared in the March 2003 issue of Newsbreak, the newsletter of MUG ONE - Macintosh User Group of Oneonta, NY.