SPRING CITY PA – The senior pastor of the Spring City Fellowship, 540 Glass Ave., can now add the title of “author” to his many credits.
William M. “Pastor Bill” Beck Jr. has written “A Light In The Dark,” an epic fantasy novel that chronicles the lives of animals who live in the fictional Kingdom of Marlebonne. He describes it as a “post-apocalyptic, steampunk world where colorful characters abound, the fantastic is frequent, and anything is possible.”
Translation: if you or your children enjoyed the popular “Chronicles of Narnia” books or movie, Beck’s offering should represent familiar and comfortable reading. Tate Publishing And Enterprises LLC, his Oklahoma-based publisher, certainly had that market in mind when it released the book in April (2014).
Here’s its take on the story:
“Readers are introduced to the kingdom that has stood for centuries, built on the ruins of the ancient Svargans. When a frog named Brunois comes into possession of a curious artifact, it starts a chain of events that will take him; his young niece, Rana; and a mysterious horse named Auroka into an ancient subterranean complex. There, they uncover monstrosities that have lain dormant for hundreds of years and a secret that has been hidden for generations.
“In that dark place they must face their fears and their failings, and they will have to rely on one another if they are to escape and prevent the impending catastrophe.”
If that sounds somewhat ominous and brooding, Beck acknowledged the book was written during a time when his family faced personal crisis. It serves, he said, as an allegory for his own experiences then.
The book also, however, blends in spiritual elements; it demonstrates the love and respect Beck’s characters hold for one another, according to reviewers; and it advocates trust and teamwork as potential solutions to any challenges. The tale is positive and affirming, and just last week (Saturday, July 19) was the subject of a church youth group book discussion.
Since publication of “A Light in the Dark,” Beck has been working a Pennsylvania circuit to promote the book. He’s appeared at local art and literary festivals, and spoken to hopeful future authors during school events.
Beck proclaims himself to be “an author, chef, minister, nerd, husband and father” who lives in Spring City with his wife, five children, four cats, a dog, “and a few choice thoughts.” He also works as the executive chef of Camilla Hall, a nursing home in Malvern PA.
Photos from the Spring City Fellowship, and Tate Publishing