Andy Polaine
Andy Polaine
Jul 23, 2008 3 min read



The Designer’s Review of Books is on permanent hiatus and no longer accepting any books for review. My day job simply takes up too much time. Thank you to all of those authors, publishers and reviewers who have contributed in the past. The site remains up for posterity (because the Web really needs more content after all). Until I get fed up with updating Wordpress against hacks and I kill it off.

Below is the original About text.


Although there are several good design websites that occasionally have book reviews, there didn’t seem to be a single place online where you could get constant updates and reviews of new (and sometimes old) design books.

Design books are often expensive and contrary – sometimes the book is worth having for the physical production values alone, sometimes for the images, sometimes for the words and, occasionally, for all three. We wanted to cover those elements in our reviews so that you know whether it’s worth owning.


The DRB was founded and published by Andy Polaine who is an interaction and service designer, writer, researcher and lecturer. Andy is currently co-writing a book on Service Design for Rosenfeld Media (and as a result no longer personally reviews the RM books). Long-time reviewer, Dominic Flask, took over as Editor of The Designer’s Review of Books for a time. Andy remained with the spurious title of Editor-at-large, which meant he still did some writing when he could.

The masthead font is Buffet Script designed and generously donated by Ale Paul from the Sudtipos type foundry. Matt Willis helped out with some early designs and advice. Behind the scenes the DRB powered by Wordpress and the typographically potent and very flexible Thesis theme. The archive is static and runs on Hugo.

Why is there now an apostrophe in the title?

Originally there was no apostrophe and it was always an ambiguous grammatical point. If you want to read the full story, take a look here.


The Designer’s Review of Books was always a labour of love and my day job started taking all my time, so it is on permanent hiatus and no longer accepting any books or submissions for review. Thank you to all of those authors, publishers and reviewers who have contributed in the past.

What’s with the Amazon store?

It takes a lot of time to look for, read and review all the books here. Currently the only income for the DRB is via Amazon referrals, Google ads and other sponsors. You can help keep the DRB going by either using the built-in Amazon aStore or by following the links in the reviews. There is no longer an Amazon store, since the links are too tedious to keep up-to-date.

Why do you have three Amazon stores?

Amazon, rather annoyingly, only offers affiliate IDs on a per-country basis. That means we have to have a different ID for every aStore we have and every time we add a book to the aStore, we have to do it three times. At the moment most of our readers are in the USA, UK and Europe, but if you think we should open an aStore in one of the remaining countries – Canada, France or Japan – get in touch and if enough people ask, we’ll add them.

Can we donate to help you out?

Absolutely and we will love you for it, even if it is just a dollar or two. If you would like to donate, please use the hideously ugly PayPal button below: