The traditional large print book format is designed for people who have a deteriorating vision.
The first large print books were produced in 36pt in 1910 but proved too large and this font was abandoned in favor of the more popular 24pt. Covers were also standardized with different colors representing different genres.
Today, publishers such as ReadHowYouWant produce 16pt large print editions in trade paperback format; whenever the work extends to more than 800 pages, a lightweight cased edition can be produced. When specially requested, works are also produced in larger fonts – 18, 20, and 24pt. The 16pt large print editions produced today are much easier for people to handle and have much more appealing covers, which means they have grown massively in popularity over the years.
Nowadays, 16pt is the standard large print edition stocked by public libraries around the world. Many public libraries have a good range of large print titles for borrowing, but large print books can also be purchased through booksellers such as Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and AbeBooks. These booksellers have a large selection of large print books including many ReadHowYouWant editions.
Since Covid-19 libraries have implemented strong protocols around loaning books, including storing the books for 72 hours before being processed for reloans, staff wearing PPE, click and collect services as well as extended delivery services. Bookstores have implemented similar protocols, and online stores have increased in popularity for contact-free/reduced contact shopping.
The large print has also been shown to support students who are struggling with reading. Cengage conducted a study in 2019 which found that large print books improve student reading confidence and comprehension. It showed that students developed stronger reading skills and greater confidence in their own ability.
It is not just the larger font size that supports the reader, but also the spacing between lines, words, and letters. A sans serif type font is preferred, and ReadHowYouWant uses the Gill Sans font to produce their large print books.
Non-fiction titles have enduring popularity in large print. Mind Body Spirit, Religion, Business and Economics, Biography, and Self-Help titles published by ReadHowYouWant continue to be the most popular genres. From a fiction perspective, the classics continue to have ongoing appeal in large print, such as The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain, and romance and westerns.
ReadHowYouWant now publishers over 20,000 titles in large print, making it one of the biggest large print publishers. All of their books are print-on-demand and available for delivery to the US, UK, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Visit our website www.readhowyouwant.com
Author: Vicki Grundy