Retired Head of Religious Studies Releases Apocalyptic Thriller
A retired religious education teacher from Ystradgynlais has released Satan's Alternative, a new apocalyptic thriller set in 2012 with mankind facing elimination. Writing under the pseudonym of James Stevens, this is Steve James' second novel after retiring, following his successful debut, The Judas Codex.
“Coming from a strict chapel background it was inevitable my views on the Bible would be tinged with bias, but my time spent in the Royal Air Force altered that,” said Steve James. “Experiencing other faiths at first hand I began to question my beliefs, and that questioning shaped my teaching career. During the mid 1970s I developed lesson plans which were based on comparative religions. Controversial at the time, by the 1980s they had become the norm and compulsory by the 1990s. The words of the author Robert Griffiths, one of my brightest pupils, speaks volumes about my open-minded style of teaching; 'You prompted us to view the scriptures from a critical rather than devotional perspective.'”
“My interest in writing goes back a long way,” explains the author. “The idea for my first novel - The Judas Codex - which pre-dates the Da Vinci Code by some thirty years, took root in the 1970s. A busy teaching schedule meant I didn't have time to put pen to paper, which is a shame; by now I might have been a household name. Each of my novels touches on my early experience of the church and the way primitive ideas impacted on it.”
Each of Steve James' novels has a kernel of truth. Satan's Alternative touches on a problem that is global; set in the year 2012, the present era, it deals with the collapse of the world monetary system. There appears to be only one ending - Armageddon. In the past the onset of two world wars decimated the population and helped create new growth. A third would benefit no one; there would be very few survivors and no economy.
What makes Satan's Alternative unique is that it takes apocalyptic literature to a new level. Faced with social unrest on an unprecedented scale, the world seems doomed, but one man sees things differently. Convinced he is the modern Noah, he bases his solution on the Book of Genesis; the world must be cleansed of sin so that mankind can begin afresh. The author adds, “What occurs in the book is possible, perhaps inevitable. As in the first novel I want the readers to say, yes I know it's a work of fiction; but what if?”
Steve James spent his formative years in the Royal Air Force, serving mostly overseas. He is a retired Head of Religious Studies and holds a Bachelor of Education form Cardiff University as well as a Bachelor of Divinity in Theology.
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