Foundlings - A Review

Book One of The Peleg Chronicles
by Matthew Christian Harding

Although I don’t personally read fantasy fiction these days, when I received Foundlings, and read the cover, it sounded like this could be a refreshingly different story.

“There be dragons. There be giants. And God: our maker, our help, and our righteous judge.” The Warrior’s broad hand rested upon the eager shoulder of a boy. “Does it not stir your soul?”

It was in the days of Peleg, when the world was divided. After the flood of Noah, after the tower of Babel and the dispersion, when men wondered where they were upon the earth, and where their fellows had gone to, when beasts were more numerous than men – predators in the wood, in the water, and in the air. But men struggled and fought, carving their place. And in the process of time they once again began to multiply upon the face of the earth.

Fergus was shield-bearer, sworn protector of his liege Lord. Armed with spear and sword, his purpose, he knew was to defend his master, anticipate danger, and support assault. But keeping up with McDougal’s long legs was difficult, and he trembled with excitement of what might come next.

A human voice screaming, and McDougal exploded down the hillside. A moment later, he leapt upon a rock twenty feet from the bog’s discernable edge and drew back the first arrow. Fergus scrambled up beside him.

On the other side of the marsh, a man of dwarf height, thickset and slightly hunched, staggered from the woods – a mace outstretched above his head. He peered into the high branches of the forest. But the pursuing creature, whatever it was did not emerge from the canopy above. Down at the forest floor, near the base of the great dead tree, a black mouth, imbued with yellowed teeth, hissed and snarled. The dwarf screamed and swung his mace through the air…” (from the back cover)

Peleg is not a very well-known Bible character, but he was the great, great, great grandson of Noah. He was born about 100 years after the flood. While this is a fictional book, Mr. Harding has done quite a bit of research into this timeframe (approximately 2249-2010 B.C.), which he skillfully uses in the story. He holds to a young-earth, creationist view of history. If you’re interested in the more of the historical aspects of the time of Peleg, Mr. Harding shares a timeline on his website, along with biblical references to dragons and giants, and other information.

Personally, it was a little hard getting hooked in the beginning of the story. It did come around and become more interesting and intriguing. I found myself eager to finish the story and learn the outcome for the various characters. I know there are varied opinions regarding magic in fantasy fiction, but this book is promoted as having no magic, evolution, or humanism. Additionally, the truths of God are woven throughout the story. The message comes across pretty heavily, but it wasn’t an issue for either my son or me. We’ll be placing our order for Book Two, Paladins. There will be a third book in the series, Lord willing.

There are some darker portions of the book, though it’s not a gruesome and gory tale. This would be a good book for pre-teens and up, particularly those who are fascinated with fantasy fiction stories. Foundlings and Paladins are published by Zoe & Sozo for $11.95 each, or they can also be ordered through Amazon.

If you'd like more input, you can read more reviews of Foundlings by other members at the TOS Crew blog.

Disclaimer: I was provided a free copy of Foundlings to review on behalf of the TOS Crew. The opinions stated here are my own.

1 comment:

The dB family said...

Although not to much into the fantasy novels myself, I do know of a boy in this house who would quite enjoy it! I'm thinking Christmas present. Thanks, for the review!


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