I have been enjoying the latest arrival to my Bible collection: the NIV Thinline Reference Bible, large print, ebony cowhide edition. This is a beautiful Bible and worth every penny. I love the print and I love the size. The cowhide leather feels and looks amazing. It is the black letter edition and I am thankful for that. If we could rid the world of red letter editions I would be thrilled. Trying to read pink letters is not fun, especially while preaching. I am a big advocate for single column Bibles. However, the NIV Thinline Reference Bible large print is probably one of the most well done double column reference editions I have seen. Everything about the layout just seems right. The paper is very white making the words pop off the page. The paper feels a little thin, but seems to be the same paper weight as most other high quality Bibles I own. The bleedthrough or ghosting is slight despite the thin paper. The large print is well done, using a 10.5 size font. It is easy to read, but not so large to make the Bible heavy. Even with the large print, this edition is less than 1 inch thick.
One thing Zondervan learned from the mistake of the TNIV Reference Bible is to make the superscriptions indicating marginal notes smaller. The superscriptions in the TNIV Reference Bible regularly interfered with the text causing difficulty in reading God’s word. This problem has been corrected in this edition. I love that it comes with two ribbons, a surprise because I did not read that it came with two ribbons on Zondervan’s website, nor on CBD or Amazon. The only small complaint (and it is very small) is that the cover has stitching down the middle as if it were a two-tone imitation leather. I don’t understand this choice, but this should not prevent anyone from buying this beautiful Bible. There are probably many who think it looks good. To me it looks strange.
You can see pictures at the Sundry Times (though he has a bonded leather edition)
And you can see pictures at Inquiring Minds
Now I have a fine, high quality calfskin leather edition for the ESV, HCSB, NIV, and NRSV. If you want a new NIV 2011, I strongly recommend you purchase this edition. The layout is pleasing to the eyes and encourages reading.
Next on my list is to read through this new edition and find out if the new NIV has fixed all the problems or if there are still some areas that miss the mark.