Throughout the twentieth century, modern design theories in combination with newer printing technologies offered book designers far more options than were previously available to them.
Utilizing these resources, some skillful artisans produced stunning designs in period style, arranging modern re-cuttings of early type designs with historical decoration that resulted in the creation of truly beautiful books; while others preferred a more contemporary aesthetic, building upon earlier principles in a fresh, novel manner. Through the selection of eleven master designers, Jerry Kelly illustrates a wide range of styles: from classically inspired design and historical revival, to novel and modern layouts. He describes the care with which each designer combined typographic elements in their own unique way.
The selection of these designers, ranging from Updike to Zapf, is only a small sampling of the practitioners that the twentieth century produced, but they are indicative of the wide range of book design styles achieved during this exceptionally dynamic century.