After some thought, I’ve decided that I’m going to do a deconstruction — if you can still call it a deconstruction if you find more about the book that you like than you dislike — of another book by Frank Peretti.
I’ve read a total of five Peretti books. Each one of them is slightly different in some way. This Present Darkness is about the war between angels and demons as it plays out in a small town. Piercing the Darkness, its sequel, is also about angels battling demons, but this time the main focus is the battle over a particular soul (though it did have a swipe at the public education system, which was a popular topic at the time I was reading it due tot he emergence of outcomes based education).
The third book that I read was Prophet, which was not about angels and demons but about a journalist who found himself living a “prophetic” (in the terms of warning others of the consequences of their misdeeds) vocation. The book mostly focused on the evils of the (liberal, of course) media and abortion.
The fourth book that I read was The Oath. It was a strange book in that it was far more a Horror book than the others. While it got preachy about the nature of sin, there was also no clear connections to actual spiritual movements (at least not that I’m aware of) like the first three were. I often joked that The Oath seemed more like Peretti contracted Stephen King to write a book for him in comparison to the others I had read.
I should note that I read these four books when I was in high school, when I still considered myself a fundamentalist Christian. As such, I read them as a member of Peretti’s target audience.
I didn’t read my fifth book, The Visitation until I was in my late twenties or early thirties, long after I became a witch and devotee of Freyja. In many ways, I suppose that’s why i liked the book. In this book, Peretti turned his critical eye away from “outsiders” and turned it upon his own religious subculture. As a former member of that same subculture, I appreciated his look.
I’ve decided that I want to do an in-depth analysis of The Visitation. As I said, I’m not sure I can call it a deconstruction, as many of the parts that I will be exploring are places where I actually identify and agree with Peretti’s thoughts. However, given the nature of the main plot, which I wasn’t as impressed with, I don’t expect my comments to be entirely glowing, either.
I’m also hoping that it might be interesting to compare this book with This Present Darkness. Who knows, maybe it’ll even spark up some sort of discussion between Yamikuronue and myself as we compare our experiences of our respective Peretti books.