The Bible Gets a Makeover to Look More Like a Novel

A book you quite possibly know very well is getting a new look. The Bible is undergoing a modern redesign thanks to a new Kickstarter campaign headed by Santa Cruz typographer Adam Lewis Greene. Called Bibliotheca, Greene's project aims at increasing Biblical literacy by enhancing the visual appeal and readability of the hefty religious text, crafting a more fluid reading experience.

Despite being one of the most widely distributed books worldwide and America's reigning favorite book, only one in five Americans actually read the Bible regularly. Greene believes that the book's visual presentation may have something to do with it. He thinks that giving it a sleek, novel-like makeover might make people actually want to read it.

And I’d have to agree with Greene — the 2,000-odd-page book is not the most approachable work of literature in terms of typography. Its thin, multi-columned pages and font that borders on microscopic give the Bible a dense, textbook-like feel and deliver a reading experience starkly different from that of a novel. The centuries-old text could definitely use a revamp, and the overwhelming support Greene’s project has received proves that many readers across the globe agree. The money Greene’s campaign has raised so far ($286,121 as of this writing) far exceeds his initial pledge goal of $37,000.

Greene’s vision nixes the clutter of verse numbers and divides the Bible into four separate hardcover volumes, three for the Old Testament and one for the New Testament, each printed on traditional acid-free book paper in a customized sans serif typeface inspired by Greene’s own impressive handwriting. The novel-sized volumes also feature hand-sewn bindings, European-style rounded spines, and ribbon bookmarks. With these improvements, Greene hopes to give the Bible a sleek, novel-like feel and make the reading experience more like enjoying a short story collection and less like browsing a dense encyclopedia.

"Today, our contemporary bibles are … very different from how we experience other classic and foundational literature, and completely foreign to how the original authors conceived of their work," Greene writes. “Bibliotheca is meant to provide a fresh alternative to the reader who wants to enjoy the biblical library anew, as great literary art.”

The Kickstarter campaign concludes on July 27, so readers who want to get their hands on a copy of this swanky literary redesign and experience the stories of Adam and Eve and Noah’s Ark “anew,” should pop over to the site to order the set for $75 — and only $63 for those who covet paperback.

If the photos don't sway you, here's the video demo:

Images: bibliotheca/kickstarter (6)