Sequel to Soul Tracker, The Presence by Bill Myers is a good read.
I’ve often wondered what people would look like if we could see each other through spiritual glasses. I would probably be surprised to scan the church congregation on Sunday morning and see baby Christians in diapers, those learning to walk, others looking mature and seasoned, while some would appear bandaged and bruised. In The Presence, Myers gives his characters’ spirits a physical appearance. He lets us see the effects of private sins and addictions on the soul, as well as the victory that comes from the smallest yielding to the Lord Jesus Christ.
The Presence is interesting. The reader keeps turning pages wondering which part of the story is real and which part is the experiment. An eclectic band of participants have gathered in a remote and programmed setting for a séance. Whether the psychic is attempting to contact a participant’s husband or brother is quickly forgotten as foreboding and uninvited guests crash the party.
Anyone who has read Myers’ The Incredible Worlds of Wally McDoogle series for youth will catch glimpses of the author’s smart alec-y style in occasional passages like this one from The Presence:
“Are you hearing anything now?”
“No, Dad.” …
“How about now?”
“Are you sure. ‘Cause we’re –”
“I don’t hear a thing.”
“But we’re reaching the bottom of the hill. The cliff is only a few dozen –”
“Wait a minute, you’re right. I do hear something.”
“Yeah? What? What does it sound like? What does –”
“It sounds like someone who can’t keep quiet long enough to let me listen.”
David closed his mouth. Fine. He wouldn’t say another word. He’d answer only when spoken to. And if Luke chose not to speak (and those chances were pretty high), then so be it. Of course, it hadn’t always been like that. In his younger days, Luke was an incessant chatterbox – ADHD on caffeine. It came in handy when they had to hold their own against Emily and her mother – two women who always left them in the dust with their verbal skills, not to mention their loopy female logic. But gradually, as they ran out of women, Luke ran out of words.
The ending is a mix of “this could happen” and artistic flare that leaves the reader trying to fit puzzle pieces together. The take home from The Presence is that a bad day with the Lord is better than a good day without Him.
An accidental writer, Myers began as a play director. That developed into screen writing, directing, and writing books. Myers has 40 awards including one C.S. Lewis Award. Many will know Myers as the creator of the McGee and Me films produced by Focus on the Family.
“I took one writing class and didn’t do well in that,” Myers said. “I have such a passion for Christ and to see people come to know Him that if God convinced me I could get more people to do that by running a drill press, I’d start running a drill press today.”
With some 80 books published, Myers has written for all ages from children to youth to teens to adults. “I write pop fiction,” Myers said. “I try to give it some substance so it lasts beyond one generation. I get 50 emails a day saying they can’t put my book down and occasionally one that says I should go work in my dad’s hardware store. The only ones that count to me are the ones that say, ‘my life’s changed.’”
In addition to The Presence, I recommend you read Myers’ personal favorites, When the Last Leaf Falls and The Face of God. And for a good time, read a Wally McDoogle book. – PeggySue Wells, Christian Book Previews.com
The first subjects exposed to The Presence went insane. Now a far more terrifying experiment is about to begin…A diverse group of unusual characters is airlifted to a remote mountain lodge. Here they hope to participate in a séance connecting them to the spirit world.
David Kauffman and his teenage son have joined them to debunk a world-class psychic and expose her as a hoax.But not even David is prepared for what greets them. Still shaken by his daughter’s death and his visits to heaven and hell, he’s swept into a fantastic journey exposing the supernatural souls of men, where unseen thoughts become unimaginable reality.
As the power of The Presence increases, the group must overcome their innermost passions or be destroyed by them. All this as they struggle to break free of their captor—the head of experiment and the murderer of David’s daughter.
Bestselling novelist Bill Myers weaves a supernatural thriller that will keep you turning pages late into the night—and thinking days after you’ve finished.