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This Present Darkness Paperback – August, 1989

852 customer reviews

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Paperback, August, 1989
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Editorial Reviews Review

This Present Darkness, by Frank Peretti, is among the classic novels of the Christian thriller genre. First published in 1986, Peretti's book set a suspenseful standard in spiritual warfare story-telling that has rarely been met by his contemporaries. Set in the apparently innocent small town of Ashton, This Present Darkness follows an intrepid born-again Christian preacher and newspaper reporter as they unearth a New Age plot to take over the local community and eventually the entire world. Nearly every page of the book describes sulfur-breathing, black-winged, slobbering demons battling with tall, handsome, angelic warriors on a level of reality that is just beyond the senses. However, Christian believers and New Age demon-worshippers are able to influence unseen clashes between good and evil by the power of prayer. Peretti's violent descriptions of exorcisms are especially vivid: "There were fifteen [demons], packed into Carmen's body like crawling, superimposed maggots, boiling, writhing, a tangle of hideous arms, legs, talons, and heads." This book is not for the squeamish. But for page-turning spiritual suspense, it's hard to beat.

From Library Journal

The small town of Ashton is the scene of a terrific battle between evil demons led by Rafar and angelic forces let by Tal in this Christian suspense tale by a best-selling author. Leaders of the human participants are Marshall Hogan, editor of The Clarion, Pastor Hank Busche, their friends, and groups of praying Christians. The battle wages fiercely, working up to a thrilling and satisfying climax. However, the superbly fiendish reading by Jack Sondericker, employing an incredible range of voices, reaches greater heights of horror than does the author's prose. Recommended for popular collections with a wide Christian audience.?Sister Avila, formerly with Acad. of the Holy Angels, Minneapolis
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 375 pages
  • Publisher: Crossway Books (August 1989)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0891073906
  • ISBN-13: 978-0891073901
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.5 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (852 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,509,098 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Frank E. Peretti is one of American Christianity's best-known authors. His novels have sold over 10 million copies, and he is widely credited with reinventing Christian fiction. He and his wife, Barbara, live in the Pacific Northwest.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

146 of 157 people found the following review helpful By mjanke on March 4, 2002
Format: Paperback
With THIS PRESENT DARKNESS, Frank Peretti broke onto the scene by graphically tearing back the veil between our world and the spirit world. Descending upon the small town of Ashton, angels, demons, and strongmen engage in vivid spiritual battle and we, the reader, are able to see it all unfold. Ever wonder what exactly a guardian angel might do? Here's one possible scenario.
While Peretti's theology on the subject may not be perfect (many of his ideas are pure speculation, but that's why it's "fiction"), he does most definitely give us a bold reason as to why prayer is so vital. Why prayer does, in fact, move mountains and can turn the tide in unseen spiritual battles that are taking place around us (as happens in the book of Daniel). For that reason alone, THIS PRESENT DARKNESS is worth reading.
To be fair, this is not Peretti's best written book. THE OATH and THE VISITATION are both more sound, from a literary perspective (real character development, for example, isn't the best here). But before the LEFT BEHIND series, no other Christian novels were as widely read as this and its sequel. It is a true Christian fiction classic and a real page-turner that will have you burning the midnight oil. FOUR 1/2 STARS.
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69 of 73 people found the following review helpful By Jackson on February 21, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
In the last 40+ years I have only read 3 books more than once. This is one of them and I have read it 3 times. There were a few years in between each read, but every time, I enjoy it as much as the first. If you ever question "Are there really angels on our side, is there a God, how does Satan and his demons get to us, are our bad habits encouraged by Satan, etc" this book will answer those questions and give you a mental picture of what they look like and what they are doing. Written as a story, it is captivating and awe inspiring. I'm a believer so I didn't need this book to convince me of anything, but, it left me with a feeling that angels really do stay right by my side and they and God are fighting for me every minute to help me stay away from the wrong path and keep me alive and well. The angels are the warriors fighting the Enemy every step of the way and your prayers give them strength. Keep praying and read this book. Or like it more than once!
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77 of 89 people found the following review helpful By Michael Erisman on November 27, 2000
Format: Paperback
This is a wonderful book! Frank Peretti writes in a style that is engaging and suspensful. He weaves together a plot involving both a human struggle of philosophical and political agendas, and the spiritual battle occuring at the same time between the spiritual forces of good (Angels) and evil (Demons).

It is this weaving of the plot between everyday issues and spiritual long term agendas that is the most compelling reason to read this book. The spiritual battles come to life in such a vivid way, that you may never view your life in the same way again! The images of how the spiritual battles are waged between God's Angels and the principalities of darkness, and how people are used for purposes beyond thier personal agendas, are presented in a manner which turns the perception of current events into something perhaps more than they appear to be.

The book starts a bit slow, seemingly the day in the life of a small town, but once the plotlines start coming together you won't be able to put it down. The main characters are developed well, and are presented as real people who could be our neighbors. It is fiction all the way, so don't expect an academic thesis on the supernatural and Biblical themes of spiritual realms, simply enjoy the story and the message.

I have given copies of this book to dozens of people and have not had anyone, Christian or Athiest, not enjoy the story. I highly recommend this book, as well as it's sequel: "Piercing The Darkness".
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41 of 47 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer VINE VOICE on November 26, 2000
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Have you ever known that you are supposed to do something, but you can't seem to motivate yourself? Have you felt like the whole world is against you? Have you ever felt like what you were doing just wasn't what you wanted? If you answered yes, then you should definitely give "This Present Darkness" a try. This book gives a possible reason as to why we have these feelings.
Frank Peretti gives us a tale of a small college town that has a war going on in it. It's not a war with guns and bombs, but a spiritual war. There are demons all over the town, making people turn away from God. The demons plan to take the entire town and rid the town of the angels that have come to help. It is a wonderful tale of good versus evil. It is very gripping and as my title tells, "Frighteningly realistic". I'm sure everyone has felt like they should be doing something, but there is something that is holding you back. This book gives a very unique idea as to why that happens. Read it and you might look at things a little differently. I highly recommend this book.
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Kri Kri on February 23, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I read this book (And it's follow up) more than once when I was an older teenager. It is written very well and I am about to purchase it for my kindle so that my eldest son can read it, after I do another reading of it myself. Yes, I want to read it again myself!

If you like Christian fnatasy that also has a strong basis for teaching you that sacraficing for God is not actually...a's freedom, you'll find this book right up your alley! Just as Jesus died on the cross (Sacraficed himself), so does this book put readers in the shoes of intense characters and tramatic experiences where they lay it all down for what they believe in. Some lay it down for God, some lay it down for other things.

Make no mistakes, these characters are not all goody two shoes. They learn their lessons the hard way..just as we do. It can be a rough ride doing what you believe, stepping up your faith, and willing to give it all for God. This book does not hold back the mortal costs, but neither does it leave out the immortal gains (and losses) for these costs. This book brings you right into the horror of what many don't even realize is out there. Not only evil as defined by the word 'Satan and devil', but the evils humanity itself can and will do.
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