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The Other Side of Darkness

Melody Carlson
The Other Side of Darkness
sneak Peek

The Other Side of Darkness

Melody Carlson

$18.99

Paperback
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"Once again, I have kept the demons at bay."

As a wife and mother, Ruth knows her prayers are crucial to her family's spiritual welfare. She stands between her precious children and the evil one, doing battle in prayer. She can't afford to be careless. Thankfully, she has powerful allies: Pastor Glenn, New Life Christian School where her daughters Mary and Sarah attend, and the inner circle at Arbor Drive Fellowship. They all reinforce her careful nurturance of her children.

If only her husband, Rick, understood that. He's exasperated about the money Ruth keeps spending for the church and school. Doesn't he see that these are their best defenses in shielding their children from the dangers of the world?

But the forces that threaten Ruth's faith, her family, her very life, are not the ones she expects. Ruth doesn't realize that her heartfelt desire to obey God is mingled with dangerous currents of OCD-Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Her own strategies for protecting her family could be pulling it apart in exactly the way she fears from the evil one.



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About "The Other Side of Darkness"

"Once again, I have kept the demons at bay."

As a wife and mother, Ruth knows her prayers are crucial to her family's spiritual welfare. She stands between her precious children and the evil one, doing battle in prayer. She can't afford to be careless. Thankfully, she has powerful allies: Pastor Glenn, New Life Christian School where her daughters Mary and Sarah attend, and the inner circle at Arbor Drive Fellowship. They all reinforce her careful nurturance of her children.

If only her husband, Rick, understood that. He's exasperated about the money Ruth keeps spending for the church and school. Doesn't he see that these are their best defenses in shielding their children from the dangers of the world?

But the forces that threaten Ruth's faith, her family, her very life, are not the ones she expects. Ruth doesn't realize that her heartfelt desire to obey God is mingled with dangerous currents of OCD-Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Her own strategies for protecting her family could be pulling it apart in exactly the way she fears from the evil one.


- Publisher

Meet the Author

Melody Carlson

Melody Carlson has published over ninety books for adults, children, and teens, with sales totaling more than two million and many titles appearing on the ECPA Bestsellers List. Several of her books have been finalists for, and winners of, various writing awards, including the Gold Medallion and the RITA Award. Some of her popular multi-volume series include Diary of a Teenage Girl and True Colours.

Excerpt

Excerpt from: The Other Side of Darkness

Prologue

That’s not good enough.”

I scratch the mosquito bite on the back of my arm and adjust my thick-lens glasses to look up at my mom. Her eyes feel like two sharp prongs probing right into my forehead–as if she can read my thoughts. And maybe she can.

“Why not?” I say quietly, then glance away, wishing I’d kept quiet.

“Look at that carpet.” Her index finger points down like an arrow at the new orange shag carpeting that goes wall to wall in our small, wood-paneled family room.

I look but see nothing other than carpet. Still, I know better than to state this as fact.

“Pull the vacuum back and forth in straight lines. Back and forth, back and forth, like this.” She uses her hands to show me, as if I don’t fully understand the concept of back and forth.

I stand with my shoulders hunched forward, staring dumbly down at the sea of orange at my feet.

“If you did it right, Ruth, I would see neat, even rows about six inches wide. Now, start in the corner by the fireplace, and do it again.”

I frown and, although I know it’s not only futile but stupid, say, “But it’s clean, Mom. I vacuumed everything in here. The carpet is already clean.

The family room becomes very quiet now. With the Hoover off, I can hear the sounds of kids playing outside, enjoying their Saturday freedom like normal ten-year-olds, not that I mistake myself for normal. And then I hear the familiar hissing sound of my mother as she blows air like a jet stream through her nostrils.

“Ruth Anne!”
She bends down and peers at me, those flaming blue eyes just inches from my own. “Are you talking back to me?”

I glance down at my faded blue Keds and mutely shake my head. I do not want to be slapped. Without looking at her, I turn the vacuum cleaner on again and drag its bulky, cavernous body over to the wall by the fireplace next to the big picture window, although I don’t look out. I don’t want to see my friends playing. Even worse, I don’t want them to see me.

As I vacuum the rug all over again, I try not to think about my older sister, Lynette, the pretty one. I try not to imagine her at her ballet lesson just now, looking sleek and lovely in her black leotard and tights, doing a graceful arabesque with one hand on the barre, glimpsing her long straight back in the gleaming mirror behind her.

“You are not made for ballet,” my mother had told me two years ago when I pleaded with her for lessons. “You’re much too stout, and your arms and legs are too short and stubby. You take after your father’s side of the family.”

And I can’t disagree with her when I examine myself in the bathroom mirror. With my dark hair of untamable curls and these muddy brown eyes, I definitely do not look like I belong in this particular family of blue-eyed, long-limbed blonds. Well, my mother isn’t a true blonde. She helps it out with her monthly bottle of Lady Clairol, although no one is allowed to mention this fact, ever, and she takes care to purchase her “contraband” in a drugstore in the neighboring town where no one knows her. But she lets it be known that Lynette and my little brother, Jonathan, both get their silky blond locks from her side of the family–a respectable mix of English and Scandinavian.

Jonathan is four years younger than I am, but unlike me, he is not an accident. Plus he is a much-wanted boy, named after my father, Jonathan Francis Reynolds. Once while playing hide-and-seek at church, I was hiding behind the drapes in the fellowship room when I overheard my mother talking to a lady friend. The other woman commented on how Lynette and I look nothing alike. “Oh, Ruth wasn’t planned, you know,” my mother said in a hushed tone, causing my ears to perk up and actually listen for a change. “Good grief. My little Lynette was still in diapers, and suddenly I was pregnant again! Can you imagine? Well, I was completely devastated by the–”

Just then Jonathan raced over and threw himself around my mother’s knees, complaining that he’d been left out of the childish game.

“Now, this one”–my mother spoke with pride as she ruffled his pale hair–“he was no mistake.”

Customer Reviews For "The Other Side of Darkness"

Write Your Own Review
An outstanding read!
5 stars By Jess Eastaugh, May 27 2009
The Other Side of Darkness is the eye-opening story of Ruth, a wife and mother who is desperate to protect her family against the forces of darkness. Under the guidance of her pastor and others more spiritually aware than herself, Ruth believes she must religiously engage in spiritual warfare to guard herself and those she loves from satanic attack. 

Gradually her fears increase and spread, affecting her two young daughters and isolating her husband and son. Never free from the need to purify and protect herself and her family, Ruth is condemned by her Christian peers for her apparent lack of faith, and subjected to prayer vigils and exorcisms in order to be worthy and capable of controlling the evil forces around her. 

Struggling against the undiagnosed symptoms of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and a member of a church gone awry, Ruth begins a decline that threatens to tear her family apart and endanger her very life.

With amazingly accurate insight Melody Carlson touches on the very fears of the human soul. The story is written from Ruth's perspective and the reader is captured by the portrayal of her character and moved by the depth of her fears.

As I read each page I felt as if my very own soul was being laid bare in print, exposing deep needs and fears common to all - the deep desire to be loved and protected by our Heavenly Father, the fear of failure and rejection, and of losing those you love most. This book is an astounding read that will touch the very core of who you are and will not leave you unchanged! 
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So disappointing
1 stars By wendy, May 22 2009
I wish I didn't have to give this book a star at all. It was very disappointing. I love every other Melody Carlson book I've read, which was why I picked this one up. But I really wish I hadn't. It was a major effort to read.

The book is based upon a mother, who is obsessive compulsive & then gets brainwashed into a religious cult. She then starts teaching her kids about demons & they start going around the house casting them out. The focus all seemed to be on Satan! I kept waiting for her to realise what she was doing, or for someone to help her, but it went on and on! The book was very dark & depressing. I'm sure people go through things like this in real life, but I just kept wishing it would end.
3 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Did you find this review helpful? Yes or No
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Product Details

Product Details
  • Catalogue Code 276844
  • Product Code 9781400070817
  • ISBN 1400070813
  • EAN 9781400070817
  • Pages 400
  • Department General Books
  • Category Fiction
  • Sub-Category General
  • Publisher Waterbrook Press
  • Publication Date Sep 2008
  • Sales Rank #62488
  • Dimensions 228 x 132 x 24 mm
  • Weight 0.369kg

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