At exactly the right time in my life, i was given the opportunity to read and review the book The Pray-ers/Book 1 Troubles, published by CTM Publishing Atlanta and authored by Mark S. Mirza.
For well over a year now, we have been learning in our Wednesday evening Bible study and prayer meeting about how to be a more effective prayer, and one thing I have definitely learned is that there is never going to be too much to learn on this topic! For that reason, along with the fact that i have always been an avid fiction reader, I was very excited to get a copy of this book.
The author Mark S. Mirza has written over three distinct time periods: Bible era, the 1800’s at the end of and during the post Civil War, and modern era.
He has created fictional demons and angels with names to further the story, and we see how they interact with humans throughout the three separate time periods. One thing I enjoyed, which others may not, is that the novel jumps back and forth between the eras. I like seeing how they end up weaving together, myself. My favorite era, however, has to be the 1800’s in Georgia. The main human character in this era is a traveling preacher convicted by The Lord that this is where he needs to be, even though he is a northerner. His name is Alexander Rich, and he is a friend of a real person in history, Dwight Moody. I also love how he makes very clear that the demons KNOW that in the end they will lose the battle, so all they can really do at any time is to attempt to ruin a believer’s testimony. I like that angels are interacting to strengthen believers, and that the book shows how the main characters ask for help, and deal with temptations and regrets.
There are small footnotes throughout the story giving Biblical references having to do with certain parts of the fictional story, as well as a reference section at the back of the book.
Mr. Mirza has a very strong conviction against giving any respect towards satan or his demons, so he chooses to NOT capitalize their names at all. This is actually not something I had ever given thought to before, but am doing so now.
I will warn you right now that this is not a quick, light work of fiction. It comes in at 372 pages, and although it is a novel, it is also a heavy (though important!) subject. I am dealing personally with a need to pray more, and harder than I have ever had to before, and though I don’t necessarily agree with EVERYTHING in this book, I’m pleased to recommend it to any adult or mature teen who would want to improve their prayer life.
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