As part of a blog tour introducing this new book, I have been presented with a copy to give away! If you would like a chance to receive As One Devil To Another by Richard Platt, simply post a comment below. I will randomly choose a winner one week from today :)
The story is a collection of letters from senior devil Slashreap to his nephew and trainee, Scardagger. The letters are meant to teach the aspiring devil how to keep humans from joining with and living for The Adversary (God). The trainee is given a female college student as a "client" who he is to keep within their grasp. This case study is intertwined with basic education from the devil's worldview. Is Scardagger successful in his task? You will have to read to find out!
This type of writing is a creative way of highlighting the spiritual dangers and failures of our society today. The author makes a point of saying that all of God's creation is inherently good, but it can also be twisted for evil purposes. Things like technology, media, art, literature, beauty, sex...all can be used for either good or evil. Are we aware of how we are being influenced by the world? One letter states that most humans would not like a society designed by the Adversary "because it would exist to help them grow, not simply for their amusement and distraction." There are some great insights shared about the purpose of suffering and the power of prayer.
While I liked much of the content, I found the writing language to be very similar to C.S. Lewis, which for me was the downfall. I'm not sure if the point is to make the senior devil come across as well-educated, but the way the letters are composed are very scholarly and sometimes confusing to an everyday gal like myself. I had to depend on context clues to understand what was being said at times because I certainly was not going to continually look up words in the dictionary. I would have enjoyed the book much more if it were written in a more common language.
Overall, Richard Platt uses an interesting format to convey some thought provoking (sometimes even convicting) ideas. One tidbit I will share that hit home with me was the devil's technique of distraction. His advice is: "You should never allow the client to attend to the moment she is in. You must be forever in the moment, but you must forever push her thoughts elsewhere. Get her thinking of work when she is at play, and of recreation when she should be at work...If you can render this habit of mind chronic, it will be particularly helpful to you when she is on her knees in prayer...with a little repetition you can have her thinking of her dinner when she ought to be attending to the Adversary". (Yep, I can relate to that one, how about you?)
If you would like a chance to win a free copy of this book, remember to leave a comment below!
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Tyndale in exchange for an honest review.