This Present Darkness is a Christian fiction book by well-known suspense, horror, and fantasy author Frank E. Perretti. The book was published in 1986 by Crossway Books in English language. This novel shows contemporary views on angels, demons, prayer and spiritual warfare as demons. The book sold in excess of 2.5 million copies worldwide and remained on the CBA top best sellers list for over 150 consecutive weeks after its release. It has been instrumental in promoting belief in Territorial Spirits. The title of the book comes from Ephesians 6:12 (RSV).
The list of major characters in This Present Darkness includes; Bernice Kruger (a newspaper reporter), Marshall Hogan (owner/editor-in-chief of a newspaper), Alf Brummel (police chief), and Hank Busche (a pastor).
This Present Darkness takes place in the small college town of Ashton. It resumed with Bernice Kruger, a newspaper reporter for the local newspaper, Clarion. She is falsely arrested on prostitution after taking a photograph at the annual Ashton Summer Festival. She discovered her film was destroyed after her release the next day. Marshall Hogan, the owner/editor-in-chief of Clarion newspaper took it upon himself to confront the police for the incident. Alf Brummel, the police chief, denies any wrongdoing on behalf of the police department and insists it was a mistake. Marshall doesn’t fall for Brummel’s story as he begins an investigation.
As the investigation continues, Marshall and Bernice begin to realize there is something much bigger than the thought. They uncover a plot to take over the town by buying the college which is being carried out by a New Age group named Universal Consciousness Society. When the group found out about Marshall’s knew much about them, they take the Clarion, and hiss house. He was eventually thrown into jail on the count of several false charges which includes murder and rape.
Meanwhile, Hank Busche, the unwanted pastor of the little Ashton Community Church discovers that there are many demons in the town and wonders why they have all congregated in the town. When he gets to be a nuisance to the demons, they have the Society false arrest him for rape and like Marshall, he was thrown into jail. Hank and Marshall meet in jail , they compare stories and finally put both halves of the puzzle together. During the time that this is happening, the story takes on a spiritual dimension-revealing a perspective based on the idea of unseen forces at work.
Bernice Kruger finds help and makes contact with the County Prosecutor, the State Attorney General, and the Feds. When Alf Brummel finds out about this he releases Hank and Marshall. After Hank and Marshall are released they ‘’team up’’ against the New Age group and the demons working to take over Ashton. They are aided by a local demon whose position has been usurped by a somewhat more powerful one summoned by the Society, and strikes vengefully at the usurper.