|The Author battles a dreaded Jesus Myther|
After a rather long hiatus, I'd like to apologise to those following this blog and other regulars for the last few months' radio silence. It was largely caused by a hard-drive crash that wiped out drafts of several reviews and an iPhone crash that wiped the notes I'd made while reading several other books (I do most of my reading while commuting, so I use my phone to jot notes). Yes, I have now bought a large external hard-drive and back up weekly. Hopefully my new review below will begin to make up for the long break.
The good news is that in the interim I have been reading and buying quite a few books, many of which are relevant to the focus of this blog. Christmas saw a number of newish books land in my stocking, and I am about to finish Ian Hughes' Stilicho: The Vandal Who Saved Rome. Despite its slightly silly sub-title (he wasn't and he didn't) it's a very solid and detailed account of a turning point in the collapse of the Western Roman Empire.
Yesterday I ordered Peter J, Leithart's Defending Constantine: The Twilight of an Empire and the Dawn of Christendom. It seems to be a book that is part history and part theology; both examining the history and myths around the much maligned Emperor Constantine and tackling the idea that his adoption of Christianity was ultimately a "bad thing" for that faith. Naturally, as a non-believer, I'll be looking at it purely from the historical angle, but it looks interesting.
Less interesting but perhaps more fun, is a slender self-published tome that hit my desk a couple of weeks ago. It glories in the title Nailed: Ten Christian Myths That Show Jesus Never Existed at All and is by one David Fitzgerald. It's actually Fitzgerald's contribution to an odd little competition held by some of the usual suspects from the online "Jesus Never Existed" brigade. It came runner up last year, apparently, but thanks to the wonders of print-on-demand online publishing services ("helping kooks get into print for over five years!") befuddled clowns and frothing fanatics can now purchase it on Amazon etc and have their prejudices and misconceptions gently stroked. I suspect that review won't be kindly.
Finally, please take part in the Readers' Poll on the blog's left sidebar. It gives you a choice of a number of potential future reviews and articles on this blog. I will tend to read what I find in the book shops or what publishers and authors send me, but I want to use your responses to the poll as at least something of a guide.
My new year's resolution is to ensure I update this blog regularly, so hopefully 2011 will see a lot more activity hear.
Sarcastic Bastard and Prick