Koorong's Catalogue arrived recently -- my wife picked one up on the way home -- as always, I flicked through it with a mixture of interest and dismay.
The dismay arose from book titles like Piper's Don't Waste Your Life. Now that would attract readers, wouldn't it. Particularly people not Christian looking for something to lift them. How about 100 Things God Loves About You, seriously? Disciplines of the Godly Man. Not too bad sounding, but still about finger wagging.
One of the things about self-help and 'New Age' books, except for the really kooky ones, is attractive, upbeat 'come and take me' titles.
I didn't see any books that might be truly evangelistic: taking the gospel to people who are just seeking to get through life when they feel its tougher than they can handle. This would be books that take from the Scriptures wisdom about who we are, being God's creation, and what life is really meant to be like and where the power for such life comes from.
Like (yes, I did find a title that might fit this) The Way of the Warrior, Hope in the Dark, When God Becomes Real. The 'best sellers' list had some good looking titles. I hope the general reader would find them stimulating. I hope they were written that way, for the 'general reader' market.
But then, the Bibles: so many 'red letter'. Or, as most print is rendered: the words of Jesus in brown! I hate such design. 10% of men are red colourblind: protanopic. It looks bad: the words of Jesus in dull beige! Just cut it out. There is no theological or literary reason for the words of Jesus in weird colors.
Even for a normally sighted person such as me, it is irritating. The contrast on the page is bad, demanding high intensity lighting at night. All scripture is valuable, not just Jesus words. I am reading the NIV NT brown letter edition at the moment. The low contrast hard to read, pale red type is irritating to read, hard to read, and breaks the flow of narrative. Its BAD.
Trouble is, most Bibles out of the USA come with this tedious innovation. Proving that the market there is undiscerning and not all innovation is to be applauded!