Sunday, February 22, 2009

Special Monday Guest - Chuck Black

Everyone welcome author Chuck Black!

Chuck Black is the father of six children, all homeschooled through high school. His passion is to equip young Christians to serve the Lord. He wants kids to know that avoiding sin during their youth is critical. “What may seem harmless to a young person,” he says, “actually can create a stronghold for sin that lasts long into adult life.” Sir Bentley is the second book in Chuck’s Knights of Arrethtrae series. Each installment portrays a virtue and a vice. Readers of Sir Bentley will be encouraged to embrace the virtues of compassion and courage and warned against the vice of greed. Knight duals, a hideous beast to be slain, and a mysterious maiden of mercy will keep parents and kids alike begging for one more chapter.

"Sir Bentley and Holbrook Court"

Summary:

This second installment in Chuck Black’s Knights of Arrethtrae series tells the tale of Sir Bentley, an honorable knight who abandons all to seek the truth of the Prince. Eirwyn, a mysterious young woman who brings food to the poor, teaches Bentley the power of compassion to overcome evil. Together, they save the people of Holbrook from poverty and despair.
Sir Bentley’s quest for the truth of the Prince finds him battling Shadow Warriors, a powerful lord, and a terrifying creature. Will greed destroy Holbrook? Or can Bentley and the mysterious Eirwyn restore prosperity to the kingdom through the compassion of the Prince? Intended for family read-alouds and Christian teens, this fantastic story will entertain and edify parents and kids alike.

Book Review:

Sir Bentley and Holbrook Court is an engaging read for boys and young teens. The book centers around Bentley, a young man who has just been accepted into the knighthood of Chessington. He is morally grounded and comes to odds with his duties when he is ordered to kill a group of men who follow the fallen prince. When he turns on his knight superior, he is forced to flee. With the help of the fallen princes followers, Bentley begin a new life as a peasant in the neighboring Kingdom of Holbrook. He is able to see from this new viewpoint the plight of the peasant workers in Holbrook. Bentley is forced into several adventures while learning about the fallen prince, his King and the intrigue surrounding Holbrook Court.

Sir Bentley is a Christian themed novel of knightly adventure. The book centers around the basic theme of good vs. evil and right vs. wrong. Young male teens may benefit from Bentley's example. Like most young teens, Bentley struggles to understand the influence of Jesus Christ in his life. The book sets a good example of critical decision making and choosing the right paths in life.
- Reviewed by HoHo the Magic Newt

Chuck also was kind enough to answer a few questions...

You wrote your books to inspire your children to read the Bible. Reaching children in this manner reminds me of C.S. Lewis’s work. Was he an inspiration to you?
I hardly dare to admit this, but I had not read The Chronicles of Narnia before I began writing my own series. I can’t claim Mr. Lewis’s work or any other’s for that matter as an inspiration. My inspiration truly came out of a father’s heart to see my children get excited about their own adventure in Christ. I wanted them to fully grasp the reality of what Jesus did on the cross and what it meant to be a believer and a participator in the kingdom of God.

In this day & age, salacious YA sells – have you found it a struggle to promote these books outside of Christian readership?
What a great but challenging question. I’ve seen that trend as well and am saddened by it. The Kingdom Series and The Knights of Arrethtrae books tend to strike a chord with young Christians because they inspire, challenge, and disciple through stories that are uncompromising in biblical truth and moral values. My promotion of the books thus far has been almost exclusively to Christian circles so I can’t really say how they are received outside the Christian readership.

What has been the highlight of your author journey so far?
By God’s abundant grace it is without a doubt hearing from young people around the world how these books have strengthened their faith and walk with the Lord. This recent note from a reader brings tremendous encouragement as an author…”Dear Mr. Black, May the King continue to bless you richly for His work you are doing for Him! My friends and I love your books. Not since C.S. Lewis’s Chronicles of Narnia have any fictional books boosted my faith so much. They make me cry with joy several times for what the King and the Prince do. They let me see our world through new eyes. I can’t wait to read the Knights of the Prince series [The Knights of Arrethtrae] and experience more. The King reigns- and His Son! Sophia”
This, and for no other reason, is why I write!

And the last word…
I am an accidental author. One day as I was driving home from my engineering job, I cried out to the Lord for something significant to do for His kingdom. He gently whispered in my ear, “You are going home to My great work, for I have given you six precious souls to raise and disciple. Do that well.” From that day on, I was content in my role as an ordinary dad who simply wanted to love his children. Little did I know what God would grow out of that simple obedience. Say yes to the Lord…then hang on!

Thank you, Chuck, and God Bless!

"Sir Bentley and Holbrook Court" - http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1601421257

7 comments:

Morgan Mandel said...

And today young men need to decide whether or not to go to war also. Some things don't change.

Morgan Mandel
http://morganmandel.blogspot.com

Marvin D. Wilson said...

Great interview. Chuck, I admire you for listening to His calling and doing the work you are called to do. YA NEEDS more dedicated authors like you.

Bluestocking said...

Sounds like a good book.

Mayra Calvani said...

Interesting interview. I wish all YA authors were as respinsible as you. Many write gratituous violence just to sell books.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I love authors who stick to their values!
And Chuck was so nice to interview, too.

Helen Ginger said...

Sounds like an interesting series. I bet it captures the interest of young boys!

Helen Ginger
http://straightfromhel.blogspot.com

Barbara, Goddess of Champagne said...

"Say yes to the Lord...then hang on." That made me LOL it was so perfect.