Van Til Tool

Using the Van Til Perspective as the tool to discover what life means and how it ought to be lived.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014



by  Forrest  W.  Schultz

I have been writing a lot more book reviews than I have entries into this, my first, and oldest blog.  Most of these reviews are mainly of concern to readers and writers of fiction, esp. Christian fiction.  But this one, shown below, is, I believe, of a general enough interest to reproduce here.

In fact this is the kind of thing which happens in all different kinds of thought, for example, theological thought.  The particular example which most of you would probably be interested in is the relationship between Arminianism and Hyper-Calvinism.  Many others could be noted.

If you are interested in reading my other book reviews, you can go to the blog shown below (if you have a special interest in science fiction and/or fantasy) or, if you are interested in what is happening in the counties south of Atlanta, you can go to my Southside Book Reviews blog,

Reviews Of Recently Published Science Fiction And Fantasy Books
Reviewer: Forrest Schultz 770-583-3258

October 14, 2014

Hyper-Complexity In Today's Christian Fiction

A Review of

Harry Kraus A Heartbeat Away (David C. Cook, 2012)
                     384 pp     $13.20     ISBN-13: 978-1434702579

Reviewer: Forrest Schultz

     There are many excellent qualities in this book by Harry Kraus (which I applaud), which you can read in the reviews of this book already written. Please consider them as included by reference here so I can focus my attention on one serious flaw which almost everyone seems to be overlooking, which was also overlooked by all but one reviewer of Sue Dent's Forever Richard. This flaw can not be understood without a knowledge of the historical background of the mainstream Christian fiction immediately preceding our time.

     It is not clear to me whether or not the typical Christian fiction of this period of time was as simplistic as is usually supposed, but it is clear that many Christians writing today wish to disassociate themselves from it for that reason: they do not wish for their fiction to be regarded as simplistic. This is good, but there is a danger of overreaction by producing fiction that suffers from hyper-complexity. The book by Sue Dent referred to and the book under review here both are characterized by this hyper-complexity, which is very unfortunate because it is a blot on otherwise good stories. For instance, A Heartbeat Away deals with a very interesting phenomenon -- cellular memories in transplanted hearts. But soon this fascinating cellular memories phenomenon becomes choked by the weeds of the ever more hyper-complex plot which develops concerning the identity of the heart donor and the crime which led to the death of the donor.

     The solution to this problem will not be reached until Christian writers are able to discern that this hyper-complexity is a pseudo-sophistication, not a true sophistication.


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