Hard Day’s Knight (Black Knight Chronicles #1) ★☆☆☆☆

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Title: Hard Day’s Knight
Series: Black Knight Chronicles #1
Authors: John Hartness
Rating: 1 of 5 Stars
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 230
Words: 62K


From the Publisher

Children are missing.

The police are stumped.

Halloween is coming, and an ancient evil is on the horizon.

The vampires are the good guys.

This is not your ordinary fall weekend in Charlotte, North Carolina. Vampire private detectives Jimmy Black and Greg Knightwood have been hired to save a client from being cursed for all eternity, but end up in a bigger mess than they ever imagined.

Suddenly trapped in the middle of a serial kidnapping case, Jimmy and Greg uncover a plot to bring forth an ancient evil. Soon, they’ve enlisted the help of a police detective, a priest, a witch, a fallen angel and a strip club proprietor to save the world. This unlikely band of heroes battles zombies, witches, neuroses and sunburn while cracking jokes and looking for the perfect bag of O-negative.

My Thoughts:

Ranting and theological oriented stuff ahead. Read at your own rist.

This type of book is the EXACT reason I don’t read much urban fantasy. If imams were portrayed the way most priests are, you can bet your bottom dollar there would be riots and violence and other imams going full on mufti and screaming out death notice fatwas faster than you could eat a porkchop from Willie Jewels Barbeque! In fact, the author would be in danger of having his head cut off or being gunned down at his business (just look what happened to the Charlie Hebdo publication in France!) Heck, if Hartness had written it that way and gone to Malaysia, the government itself might just cut off his head, or at best beat him until he promised to not write like that anymore. But do you see hordes of roman catholics beating down Hartness’s door, or Cardinals (the guys just lower than the Pope) sic’ing the Jesuits on him? No, you don’t. What you get is bloggers like me sighing and rolling their eyes at the absolute stupidity and lack of knowledge exhibited here.

The older I get the more I care about how Christianity is portrayed in fiction. Not because it bothers me personally but because of how many people take their cue from fiction. If you were to ask the average Joe or Josephina on the street if a priest who was truly devout would have a comparative religions breakfast with the leader of a coven of witches every month so they could genially compare theological notes, they’d probably wonder why that would be a problem at all. And that is the least of the things I had a problem with in this book. For that example, it wasn’t that the priest was friends with a witch. He should be. You can’t show Christ to people if you refuse to be their friends and don’t interact with them. But it was the “comparative” part coupled with the truly devout. On matters of theology, a Christian is not going to come together with people of other faiths and claim that they’re all equal. Only one of those faiths is genuine and since the Bible declares itself to be the Word of God Himself, a devout Christian is going to treat it as such.

Then you have stuff like demons vs fallen angels vs angels. There were no angels in this story. Just a couple of demons and a fallen angel. Who ends up being allowed to go back to Heaven “because he just had to ask”. I barely even know where to start with what is so wrong with ALL of that. Angels and demons are not just amped up humans with a pair of wings of either dovelike or batlike appearance. You cannot ascribe human emotions and reasoning to them because THEY ARE NOT HUMANS!!! That’s just the tip of it for that issue and I’m already holding my head in my hands (which is quite a feat as I’m also typng this!). I think that is enough from me. Any more and I’ll just start upsetting myself and there’s no need for that.

In conclusion, I won’t be reading any more in this series and I’ll be avoiding Hartness as an author in general.

Rating: 1 out of 5.

35 thoughts on “Hard Day’s Knight (Black Knight Chronicles #1) ★☆☆☆☆

  1. So, you read a Hard Days Night after you’d been working like a dog, read a Hard Days Night when you should have been sleeping like a log, but then you’ll get home to Mrs.B, have a nice cup of tea, and then you’ll feel alright.

    Ta da! 🤣

    Liked by 3 people

  2. I know some very devout Christians – so devout that they have been in a monastery for decades – that do doubt their faith from time to time, and that ponder about ecumene as well. These monasteries – I’m pretty well acquainted with two of them – are very strict: they preform Mass every day, and have 6 additional communal prayer services of about half an hour in which they sing (mainly) Psalms, and all that is on top of personal prayer & study. What I’m trying to say is that doubting and being devout are not necessarily opposite to each other. I always was under the impression that Protestants even valued discussion and an individual interpretation of the Bible more than Catholics, and such interpretation is necessarily an activity that comes with a certain amount of doubt, especially with such a complex text as the Bible. Not trying to start a debate here, just genuinely curious about your perspective.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. If I can add my two cents, let me just say that European religion and American religion are quite divergent at this point and European is way more sedate and open 😉 But Ratzinger even before he became the Pope, as a head of Congregation of Doctrine and Faith, did put out a Dominus Iesus declaration which sparked a discussion whether Catholic Church accepts salvation through something other than Christ – so doubts and discussions are all right, but the general doctrine of Catholicism is it has the monopoly for salvation (except for cases of invincible ignorance, eg. Aristotle and Plato ;))

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Thanks for chiming in Ola.

        I definitely agree. the worldwide church considers what has happened to most european christianity as our worst nightmare. A kind of jolly club where you try to be good and get along with everyone.

        Things like what you mention about the Dominus Jesus declaration are more about answering heretics and people who want to destroy what the Church (not the roman catholic church) has stood for and stated for over a millennia now. Never underestimate those who are enemies.

        I’ve not heard of invincible ignorance. I shall have to go see what that is. Thanks for the rabbit trail.

        Liked by 2 people

    2. Great question and some really good background there.

      I do agree that doubt is part of the human condition. However, it comes down to what you are doubting. You mention the monasts as doubting their faith. That’s not a problem, because they realize it is “their” faith they are doubting. Now, if they were to starting doubting God Himself, or Jesus, then I’d have a different answer for you.

      Discussion about the Bible IS a much accepted practice amongst Protestants. But even then, it is with the understanding that the central doctrine of God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit (ie, the very nature of God) isn’t up for discussion. We believe in a triune God who is One. Or that without Faith in Christ, no one can get to heaven. Idea like those are heresies and that is exactly what an ecumenical group would be questioning. It is only when one stops actually believing the core tenants of their faith that they can be truly ecumenical. And that is not acceptable.

      man, I just love when you start my mind going with questions like this. Anyway, I hope I was a bit clearer than in the review and let me know if I wasn’t.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Fully clear, no worries!

        The monks I know and talked to (at length btw) do not doubt Jesus, nor do they doubt God. But they do doubt/ponder the specific nature of God. None of them believe the full Bible in a fully literal sense, as they understand and know the history of how the Bible came about intimately (if I’m not mistake myself, it only got its current definite form in the 4th century, correct me if I’m wrong), but they do believe the Bible was inspired by the Holy Ghost and ultimately springs from God – even though most of them would have a hard time defining the nature of God as I said.

        It is because of that (this problem of defining God) that they can imagine other religions also being in contact with a certain divinity (even though such divinities nature is unclear), and as such also achieve a certain form of salvation, specific for their history/region. They do not doubt Heaven, but again, they doubt/ponder about how to know/define it.

        I would not say they go as far as some Dutch Protestants I have known that even interpret God and heaven in a non-metaphyical way – the Kingdom of Heaven for them being a mere metaphor, something that needs to be realized in this life – not the afterlife or something else that supersedes regular reality. But again, relevant to my initial comment, the particular guy I’m thinking about was a very, very religious and devout person, one of the people with the most integrity I have ever met. I cannot but imagine that if you would meet and talk to the guy, you would be in awe of his religious knowledge, sincerity, humility and inherent goodness, for lack of a better word. You would differ (mightly) about certain interpretations I imagine, but not about a fundamental truth: the Mystery that is God, and His prime importance, so to say.

        (On a sidenote, and something much more personal, a part of my own thoughts on that mystery – to me, Jesus’ most important teaching is the fact that he stresses the importance of and ability for forgiveness. For me, a crucial step to salvation is acknowledging we are all human, faulty, victims of being born, so to say – inheriting the Original Sin, and asking forgiveness for that. I’m not sure if that sounds as heresy to you, but I hope you don’t mind me writing my personal thoughts here. If you do, feel free to edit this comment.)

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Rereading this I want to make clear the monks I talked to would not debate the existence of the Trinity – Holy Ghost, God, Jesus. It is indeed, as you say, not up for discussion. But how to interpret that central doctrine, that’s another matter.

          Liked by 1 person

        2. I’ll shoot you an email this weekend.
          Not because I feel this is contentious, but writing about something this important needs a bit more thought that the comments section can give me.
          So hopefully tomorrow…..

          Liked by 1 person

  3. The problem I have with the book is that it introduces nothing new in its cast of characters. It’s a mix of tropes that have already existed, complete and forever, and are only being brought in because it’s convenient to do so. But at least it isn’t a male and female detective team. It’s refreshing to have two blokes going at it together, side by side in companionship …

    — Catxman


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Good point about Male Friendship. You almost never see that anymore, sadly. Part of that I think is because friendship is harder to write about than romance and so many writers take the easy road.

      Did you read any more in the series or did you stop at this one?

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I really appreciate your thoughts here. I don’t have a lot to add but I am pretty sensitive to the portrayals of Christianity in the culture. I also generally steer away from overtly anti-Christian fiction bc it’s usually lazy and uninteresting.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Glad to be of service.
      I think most Christians need to be more aware of just what they are consuming instead of swallowing entertainment whole sale. Sometimes I wonder if we’re even aware of the snakes we let into our homes that way….

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Getting someone else’s perspective on a book is always good (unless it is PNR/Erotica. Then their viewpoint doesn’t matter because that stuff is trash!).
      Plus, most of what I read doesn’t seem to be very mainstream 😀

      Liked by 1 person

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