The Peleg Chronicles is Historical Fiction that takes place in the time period of Peleg, soon after the tower of Babel dispersion. In its pages we meet dragons, giants, false priests, the death hunt, an under-city of the Dwarven Brotherhood, and many memorable characters.
The story begins with Lord McDougal and his faithful shield-bearer, Fergus Leatherhead, departing their lands with giants at their backs, while before them lie in wait denizens of the bog-land and forest. Ever ready to protect and serve others, they gather in tow an assortment of displaced adventurers and find themselves embroiled in a mysterious search for the foundlings: orphaned Thiery with his companion Horatio the white wolf, and Suzie who has been deceitfully retained by the thieves Elvodug and Flemup.
Others also seek the foundlings, and their purposes are most sinister – Dragon Priests who practice cozen sacrifices, and their leader Count Rosencross who is torn by his God given conscience and his pursuit of personal glory.
Onward toward the city of Hradcanny they travel, meeting with treachery, beast attacks, camaraderie and psalms of praise with an eye toward the gospel.
Though their battles are at times fierce and the outcomes uncertain, the author maintains the integrity of these noble characters, who through weakness are made strong by Him in whom they trust.
Foundlings weaves together the Biblical principles of chivalry, truth, courage, duty, faith and love within the framework of Genesis, and a bold adherence to its historicity.
It’s an exciting page turner that leaves you wanting more, but more importantly it leaves the reader with Godly heroes to think on and emulate, and a young earth creationist view of history that conforms to the Word of God.
Do you represent dwarfs as another race, sort of like they are found in Tolkien’s books?
No. The Bible clearly states that we are all one blood; hence we are all one race. In fact during the time period of Peleg’s life, if a person knew where Noah was, everyone on earth could have walked up to him and called him either dad, or grandpa, or great grandpa, etc. Two other facts are worth mentioning; slavery has been around for most of human history; and some people are shorter than others. In my book and in this particular place of which I write, a kingdom has recently set free the people whom they have enslaved – people less than five feet tall (That’s not that short for today’s standards). There are some people groups today with average heights around five feet, or smaller. In the culture of which I write, they are known as dwarfs or dwarves. These dwarfs have bonded together and formed a brotherhood of protection and helps. I understand that this is not the usual way we use the term today; it is just a plausible use of the word for an ancient time and place.
How does the witch fit in to the story?
There is a witch spoken of on the first page of Foundlings and then she is mentioned one more time later in the story. Witches do normally practice magic, though I have not portrayed any in this book and I will not in future books. She does prophecy a curse over Lord McDougal. Scripture speaks of false prophets and curses. Her “curse” affects the unbelievers because of their superstitions, i.e. they believe that Lord McDougal is going to die. The “bad guys” then want to make sure that happens. She is part of the plot development which shows a society that is going further and further from God’s truth.
I understand that curses are not necessarily evil according to scripture. For God curses things (the ground, those that curse Israel, etc.) and occasionally tells His people to curse (at mount Ebal – Deut. 27:13, the curse of Jotham – Judges 9:57 etc.). But it is obviously wrong to curse someone without God sanctioning the curse.
Some parents and leaders within the church teach children that certain kinds of magic are okay. This would be a “positive” perspective. Some never mention or teach either way. This would be “neutral”. And some teach that magic is evil. This would be a “negative” perspective. The last is the camp from which I come. “Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness” Isaiah 5:20
I try to treat subjects the way God does in His Word. He tells us over and over again that witchcraft and magic are evil. Those who practice such things exist, their influence has often permeated cultures, and history has shown that most of the early societies have rebelled against God and His ways. I have portrayed a witch and priests of false gods in light of scripture (For historical and Biblical examples look at the magicians of Egypt and Babylon). This particular kingdom has a number of people who still believe in and serve their Creator, but they are a growing minority. These believers are not fearful of magic, witches, idols, etc. and recognize them for what they are. Furthermore, this topic (that witchcraft and magic is bad, represented by a witch, but again, not showing her practicing any magic) is one of the smaller themes within the story though I believe an important one; it is only an element, and not the main focus. Witchcraft and magic, etc. are evil.
What is your position on giants and their relationship to demons?
One of the passages of scripture implied by the question is found in Genesis 6: “There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.” This is a difficult question and not made perfectly clear by scripture. While there is a doctrine of giants – concerning their origins – to which I lean, I do not share it within the books, nor do I intend to. It is enough that God says they have indeed existed. Scripture, at times, uses the word man when referring to giants and talks about sons of giants. Therefore I treat them as large men, just as able to receive salvation, though perhaps not as likely, due to their richness of size and strength – i.e. pride of life. I’ve listed many of the scriptures concerning Giants in the World of Peleg section if you would like to see more.
Why are the dragons in the cover art portrayed as stereotypical, mythical dragons rather than being portrayed as dinosaurs? It was my understanding that the dragon legends arose from real encounters with dinosaurs that had been embellished over time so that the dragon descriptions included fanciful elements like their hunger for treasure and wings capable of flight on a creature that has too much bulk for that to really be possible. I think that artwork depicting dragons as dinosaurs would be more true to your stated principles for the portrayal of dragons.
Dwarves living under ground have also been popularized in fantasy fiction, movies and games. I wanted to take what the world has called fantasy and play with possible ways that true creatures and peoples could have plausibly lent themselves to what later became myths. There are some underground cities, I think in Turkey (my daughter found that one for me) where tens of thousands of people once lived, obviously not the best environment, but it is good for defense, for a people not otherwise capable of great defense against a stronger foe. So I merged the idea, and it lends itself to further study for those who might be interested.
I thought along similar lines when using the artwork and depictions within my writing, of flying dragons. I looked at a lot of old art and ancient art, and read some fascinating accounts where people saw flying dragons, and ofcourse we have fossil records of what could be termed as flying dragons. Lately they have found a new dinosaur that so closely resembles the look of the ‘mythical dragon’ that headlines such as ‘Dragon or Dinosaur’ have been used referring to it.
I’ve also read Creation Scientist reports about how Pteradactyls could not lift their body mass with their wings in today’s environment, so something must have been different. They postulated that whatever it was might have changed slowly during the time after the flood (during the ice age) which might explain the gradual loss of human longevity. Again, exciting stuff for further study.
But, perhaps new covers one day might be in order 🙂
What was your purpose for writing this book? and How will it benefit my family?
I love hearing and learning about God’s truth. There is an incredible amount of nonfiction Genesis/Creation material that brings glory to God, and gets our family super excited about our Savior, and lays a foundation of faith for the rest of Scripture. Things like, the long lives of mankind before and even after the flood; where and how the ice age fits in; understanding the fascinating world of dinosaurs, mastodons, mega-fauna, and “cave-men”; getting the tools to build a Biblical worldview of mankind, technology, and so called “out of place artifacts”; gaining insight into people groups, the table of nations, and language through the Tower of Babel dispersion; aligning oneself with and defending the only worldview that is logically consistent … and much, much more.
I wanted to write books of fiction for our youth and adults that would strengthen these beliefs, and give another platform from which to excite and exhort our children to believe the Bible literally – every word. I also desire to give them exciting stories that help train them in Godly character.
Attacks on the Word, creation, and chronology, lead us into a raging battle of apologetics, giving an answer … it is so exciting, and your children will think it’s exciting. I want to exhort parents to enter the battle with their children, share it with them, and get them fired up to cross swords with fallacious attempts at dethroning God.
I believe the Peleg Chronicles will give you another venue for speaking truth into your children’s lives. Just look at the repetitive bombardment of evolution and humanism our families are exposed to. We can’t be neutral in our approach towards false ideology, or our culture will dictate what is taught by default. And reading works of fiction are one of the powerful ways that learning occurs. That’s why we must be cautious and purposeful in choosing what our children are reading.
Why do you use the term Historical Fiction “Fantasy”?
Actually, I wish I hadn’t. Fantasy has too many negative connotations from a Biblical perspective. When we are at conferences I’m able to explain that I put the word in quotes, because some of what the world calls fantasy, God calls fact or reality. The Peleg Chronicles has dragons/dinosaurs on the earth with man, giants, some mega fauna, and a technologically advanced civilization at a time when secular evolutionists don’t expect to see them. So what is normally thought of as fantasy is actually part of the exciting truth that is God’s world. By using the word fantasy I have inadvertently given the opposite message of what I intended. I reject mysticism, magic, creatures that are half human and half animal, occult beings, talking dragons, etc.
What is historical and what is fiction?
The story line is fiction. All characters are fictional. No people from the Bible are present in the story, but they are mentioned at times as living somewhere on the earth – Noah, Job, Peleg, Mizraim, and Japheth (There will never be any people or events portrayed in my books which are mentioned in the Bible because I am personally fearful of adding to God’s Word.) The nearness to the Flood is historical, the mentioning of the Tower of Babel and the dispersion, dragons/dinosaurs with man, the so called “ice age”, and giants are all historical. There are out of place artifacts, known today as OOPARTs, within the story line – Greek Fire, metallurgy, advanced math, physics, optics, cartography, engineering etc. which are evidenced throughout archeology today, though most of the evidence is either ignored or reinterpreted through evolutionary eyes.
The details of how all these aspects came together are necessarily vague because we just don’t have much documentation the further back in time we look. A dividing of people groups through the Tower of Babel dispersion would have caused much culture and technology loss, the extent of which would vary according to the circumstances encountered for each group.
Beyond these elements, I also took many of the character and place names, and religious and cultural practices from more recent ancient history. A kind of building backwards of historical elements, that were not necessarily part of the time or place brought to life in the Peleg Chronicles, but at least plausible.
Is there any romance in the books?
What age group is this written for?
Ten and up. As a read aloud, younger children could participate, though I wouldn’t think any younger than seven or eight.