Sunday, 10 July 2011

The Word Made Flesh Literary Tattoos by Eva Talmadge & Justin Taylor

I was very keen to own a copy of this book as I love literary tattoos (I have four of my own) the creators of this book also have their own webpage which they regularly update with new tattoo submissions.

The book contains many photos of literary tattoos accompanied by a note from the person who owns the ink explaining what it is, why they got it and what it means to them personally. The explanations vary from interesting and sincere to silly and pretentious

There are some excellent tattoos on display not just of words but also images either taken directly from books or inspired by them. Some of them are arguably not literary tattoos but rather typographic ones but there are very few of these.

The book is not perfect as some of the tattoos featured are, frankly, poor tattoos. Also some of the tattoos featured in the book I recognised from other books such as Ina Saltz’s ‘Body Type’

Other than that it is a fun little book to have in your collection and if you are considering getting a literary tattoo of some kind it is a great place for inspiration, if you don't mind the egos!

Final verdict 3/5

By Chris


  1. I've no tattoos and I'm not getting any, but this book does look like fun.

  2. I grabbed this book from the library a while back -- I saw some that were really nicely done, although I agree that some others weren't as well-done.

  3. I thought this book would contain a little more, so I was a bit disappointed too, but I did enjoy it nonetheless! I don't have any literary tattoos, but I would definitely like one in the future.

  4. I seen this book at my library awhile back. It might be interesting to check out sometime. I don't have a tattoo, but I'm sure I'd be totally up for getting a literary one if the urge ever took me. :)

  5. @ C.B. James: It is a fun little book and well worth a flick through if you ever get the chance :o)

    @ Jo: It's a shame there were some poor quality tattoos inside but I think most of them were very good with one or two excellent ones (The Kafka sleeve was a highlight for me)

    @ reviewsbylola: Any idea what literary tattoo you would get?

    @ Bookish Hobbit: You never know when the urge might take you! Lend it out for a while, i'm sure you'll find it interesting


  6. I love tattoos and never thought of getting a literary one. I bet this book will really inspire me to get another one.

  7. I love literary tattoos!! I've been thinking about one that I could get, but haven't settled on anything. The logo from my blog is the only tattoo I have at the moment...actually the tattoo was the inspiration FOR the blog. Great review Chris!