Since most wordsmiths are design-challenged, I asked one of the best art directors in New York–Ina Saltz, author of the excellent Typography Essentials–for her short-list of favorites for the books she designs. Here are her recommendations:
Good serif fonts (for the body of the book)
Garamond (not ITC Garamond)
Century (not Century Gothic)
Good sans serif fonts (used sparingly for contrast)
And the worst choices?
According to Ina, “Comic Sans and Papyrus are probably the two most reviled fonts on the planet. I could go into great length about why but they should just not be used, period.”
If you want to see the array of typefaces available in the market today, check out MyFonts. It’s a nicely designed site where you can easily purchase fonts you don’t already have on your computer.
Oh, and one more thing: if you’re working on an ebook, it doesn’t matter which font you choose because the reader has control of the fonts and font sizes in your book. So pick something vanilla and use it throughout: Times New Roman is fine–12 point for body copy and 14 point for chapter openers.