Nelson NKJV Personal Size Giant Print Reference Bible – Review


Personal size giant print Bibles is one of my favorite categories. Bibles in this category are not meant to be the ‘everything’ Bible. They’re meant to give you a nice giant print in an overall size that’s easy to carry and use. This review takes a look at the NKJV Personal Size Giant Print Reference Bible from Thomas Nelson. This one is the pretty purple imitation leather edition without gilted edges and ribbons.

Cover and Binding



This is a personal size edition at 8.75 x 5.5 x 1 1/8. The cover is polyurethane with a paper liner. The cover looks and feels good in the hand. It has a sewn binding. It will lay flat somewhere in Deuteronomy or 1 Corinthians. I think it would break in with use and be able to lay open anywhere.

Paper and Print





The paper isn’t as opaque as I would like, but it’s not bad either. It has white edges rather than gilted edges. The font is 11-point, red-letter. The red does have more fading than the black (as is common with red-letter texts). It has about a medium boldness and is very readable. The text is presented in double-column, verse format with no section headings. It does have poetry. Letters, and OT quotes in different formats so they’re easy to spot. There are half inch margins, which brings the text out of the gutter and adding to its readability. New books start on the same page where the previous verse left off.

End of Verse References and Notes, and Prophetic Stars




References are placed at the end of verses. They’re not keyed to the text, so there’s no way to know what portion of the text they refer to. As is typical with end-of-verse references, there are not a lot of them but what is here is useful.

The NKJV translation notes are placed in the footer under the last verse on the page. These are the standard translation notes found in the NKJV.

Messianic prophecies are mark with stars. There is an open star where the prophecy is foretold and a filled in star where they are fulfilled. Some of the verses give references to the prophecies and some do not. I’d like to see all of the foretelling’s linked to their fulfillments as it would add to the study value.

Book Introductions


Each book is introduced with around two paragraphs that gives a quick synopsis of the book, discusses the key characters, and gives some word studies of key names. The word studies cover Greek, Hebrew, and Latin mostly. The introductions are interesting. They add some valuable information without taking up a lot of space.



The concordance is 64 pages with three columns per page. It has a decent amount of useful entries. There are 38 entries for God, 40 for faith, and 14 for pray. It also has entries for praise, praised, praises, praiseworthy, praising, prayed, prayer, and prayers. It’s good enough for carry and some simple study.



There are 8 pages of full color maps. There isn’t an index but they are annotated well. I found them easy to use and they had good information. Maps include:

  • The World of the Patriarchs
  • The Exodus from Egypt
  • The Conquest of Canaan
  • The Twelve Tribes
  • David and Solomon’s Jerusalem
  • Jerusalem in New Testament Times
  • The Holy Land in the Time of Jesus
  • Paul’s First Missionary Journey and His Journey to Rome
  • Paul’s Second and Third Missionary Journeys

Putting it to Use


Being a personal size Bible it isn’t difficult to carry this one around and use while on the go.


The 11-point font is great for reading. I do wish the paper was a little more opaque. Readability is much better on the pages where the lines match up. Overall this Bible is a good reader. It doesn’t have section headings within the text, so if you find those distracting then you won’t have to worry about them here.


The 11-point font is easy to preach from. The only difficulty is it doesn’t want to stay open until somewhere in Deuteronomy or 1 Corinthians. I do think it would break in with enough use. I had no issues with the paper or font. I wish that each book began on a new page. This would provide some space for writing lists, notes, sermon outlines, etc.


This one has more tools for study than the KJV edition. The translator’s notes and concordance are probably the most helpful in study. There are no tables or lists like harmony of the Gospels, miracles, or parables. Those would have helped. The references are useful, but there isn’t a lot of them. It might be good for some simple study.


This is a usable Bible that’s well worth its price. It is very readable and easy to handle. The suggested retail price is $19.99 but I usually see it for around $15. For that, I can recommend it for carry, reading, and preaching.


Thomas Nelson provided this Bible free for review. I was not required to give a positive review.


About The Author

Randy A Brown

WordPress writer by day, Bible reviewer by night, pastor all the time. And there's also that author thing.


  1. FerventDisciple

    I have this Bible in black bonded leather. Mine has broken in nicely and has held up well in 3 years. But as I desired more study tools without commentary, I now use an NKJV Thompson Chain Reference Bible.

    • Randy Brown

      I love the Thompson Chain Reference Bible. I’ve wanted to get that in NKJV for a long time. I think I will get it soon.

  2. CWC

    I have loved the Nelson Personal Size Giant Print Ref. for several years now (we own 8 of them).

    Our family chooses to use the NKJV for quite a few reasons, (I’ll spare you the TC argument :), but it is not easy to find a good NKJV for young readers (or even older ones!).

    We have found this to be the perfect edition for our five, 6 and under, Children. These Bibles have one of the best value to price ratio’s of any Bible I own. You get a great looking, long lasting, Leather-like, cover, gilted edges on most models, and there is even a Mossy Oak Version with camo green art gilt (sans the gilt) with Copper colored lettering on the outside (Me and my two boys each have this “Outdoorsman” version).

    The book intro’s are simple, but well done, the concordance is good, as are the included maps.

    All in all for $19, it’s hard to beat this NKJV offering from Nelson.

    The Messianic stars are also great fun for our youngins (and I agree, I wish they all referenced their fulfillment related verses).

    They definitely are not at the Clarion or Schuyler level of quality, but their 11 point font makes them at times more enjoyable to read. They are great for handing out at Bible Studies.

    I would love to see Nelson offer this in a decent Calfskin / Smyth sewn model or at least a Calf-Split.



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