Having bought a number of books in the Pocket Canon series when they were first published in the late Nineties, I'm delighted to find that they're now available for the Kindle. For the uninitiated, the series reproduces individual books of the Bible as separate volumes, encouraging the reader to approach them as literary works in their own right. Each book has an introduction penned by a well-known person which provides a personal interpretation of the text and explores its contemporary relevance. The Authorised King James Version is used throughout.
Bono, lead singer of the rock group U2, is our guide to the Psalms. Reflecting on his faith both as part of his upbringing and as a theme in his music, he provides some liberating thoughts about the origins, meaning and authorship of the Psalms. The text is then presented in full, without any further notation, for the reader to explore.
On the whole, I found the Kindle adaptation of this book faithful to the original paperback series in terms of the content - none of the content had gone astray in the translation to the electronic format. I was less happy with some aspects of the presentation of the ebook version. The text of the Psalms is italicised and emboldened throughout which makes it a bit heavy on the eyes on screen. The publishers have also failed to activate the 'Table of Contents', which means that you have to keep going back to the cover and scrolling to navigate to individual Psalms.
At time of writing, the price reflects good value for money. I paid 89p for this Kindle edition, compared with the cover price of £1 for my paperback copies (although I see that these cost considerably more now). If you want a bite-sized chunk of the Scriptures to carry around with you, or if you want a new perspective on a familiar text, then this book is worth a read.
This review refers to the Kindle edition of 'The Book of Psalms' downloaded on 1 July 2012.