Christians and conservatives are world-class complainers about the current entertainment culture. Their complaints are entirely justified; there is a tremendous amount about which they can quite reasonably complain. Television is filled with perverse and immoral characters, the only reason representatives of some of the nation’s largest demographic groups appear on screens large and small is to be mocked, and the traditional virtues are openly despised and denigrated in the name of public entertainment.
The fact that these propagandist attacks on traditional culture and Christianity are made in the name of a false and nonexistent realism merely adds insulting their intelligence to the long list of the entertainment industry’s crimes against the American people.
It is not only the film and television industries that are the problem. Fiction, particularly fantasy fiction, a literary genre that was created and defined by devout religious men such as George MacDonald, J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis, has been defiled and all but ruined by devout feminists and evangelical atheists, by authors who are more than willing to sacrifice historical verisimilitude, literary quality and history itself on their ideological altars.
I’m far from the only one to notice that the decline into moral nihilism and ahistorical irreligion has had a profoundly negative effect on the quality of fantasy fiction. One is not sure whether one should laugh hysterically or weep at the claim by E.L. James, the author of the bestselling “50 Shades of Grey,” that “The Lord of the Rings” is lauded because it was written by a man, while “Twilight” and her own work of fantasy porn are derided because they were written by women.
But it is one thing to criticize and complain about an issue, however legitimate; it is another to do something about it. In writing “A Throne of Bones,” I had two objectives of modest ambition. The first was to write a better epic fantasy than George R. R. Martin, or at least a better one than “A Dance with Dragons” turned out to be. The second is to demonstrate that by relying upon historical verisimilitude, conventional literary archetypes and traditional patterns of human behavior instead of modern secular ideologies and the current assumptions of the cultural zeitgeist, an author can expect to produce a work of literary quality that is observably superior to the vast quantity of sewage being published today.
Hence “A Throne of Bones,” an 850-page novel that is the first in the series, “Arts of Dark and Light.” It is available for $4.99 in ebook format or $34.99 in hardcover. In writing it, I attempted to apply the lessons I learned in reading Tolkien, Erikson, Martin, Abercrombie, Bakker, Abraham, Zelazny and others.
It is not for me to say whether I have been successful in this endeavor, but for the readers. Here are a few excerpts from various Amazon reviewers:
“There are beautiful moments, there is clever dialogue, there is deep mystery. It took some level of genius to write it. I recommend you read it.”
“The author of this fantasy novel claims that he was inspired to write by the desire to do better than George R.R. Martin’s ‘A Dance with Dragons.’ He has certainly succeeded!”
“Vox does an excellent job of piquing your interest and then taking developments in way you don’t expect. … This is not a book for children; there is graphic violence and unflinching presentation of evil. Yet neither is glorified, and though the world is realistically portrayed with few truly good men, there is no moral ambivalence here either.”
“I sometimes thought I was reading a Tolkien book, and sometimes I thought perhaps G. R. R. Martin had finally bothered to finish his latest installment. Mr. Day’s story is in the mold of both, but his writing style and vision are decidedly his own, and they are both very, very good.”
When the culture loses its way and devolves into degradation, intellectual relativism and moral barbarism, as has happened time and time again throughout the course of history, it is the responsibility of those who maintain the old ways to show the pathway out. Christians and conservatives cannot simply retreat from cultural pollution because the poisoned smog will always follow them and their children. Like all evils, the amoral culture of human degradation must be confronted and conquered; it cannot be ignored.