A Review of Jane Lebak’s The Wrong Enemy

One day the angels came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came with them. Job 1:6 (NIV)

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Ephesians 6:12 (NIV)

“Understandable?” said the demon. “Everything is perfectly understandable. Angels have only one written law, am I correct? And that law is shown to every single guardian angel before beginning his assignment, am I still correct? Including Tabris? No one forgot to show it to him because they were too busy polishing their harps and reciting your cute scripted praises?”

Jesus waited him out. Raguel had less patience; his sword had manifested at his side, and his palms itched.

Jesus glanced at Raguel, acknowledgment in his eyes.

The demon cocked his head and folded his arms. “Would I still be correct if I were to recall that the law says, explicitly, Do not kill your charge?”

Jesus said, “You have a thorough grasp of the facts.”

… “The only thing I can’t grasp is this, “the accuser said, his voice flat. “If I’m in Hell for far less a crime that he committed, I fail to see why he should receive the mercy you denied the rest of us.”

In her newest work, a “ground-up rewrite” of a novel she wrote and published twenty years ago, Jane Lebak takes us into the heavenly realms where angels and demons face off for the souls of humanity. As she does, we come face to face with some of the oldest and still pertinent human issues that have both philosophical and theological implications that are  hidden behind the wave of current political and economic tumult that continuously pounds us.  This is a dramatic telling of a story of highest implications (no pun intended) for humanity and its soul.

Centered around the guardian angel Tabris, The Wrong Enemy (published by MuseItUp Publishing), takes us around the world,  into Heaven itself, and into the conflicted souls of the angels themselves regarding one who has caused the death of young boy, Sebastian, and is now placed in a situation where other angels, some of whom seem to question God’s judgment as to his’ reassignment to another child, must either choose to help or turn away from Tabris. The journey the writer takes us on thus becomes a journey within our own soul as we are forced to death with questions about guilt, grace, consequences, good, evil, and free-will.

Well written with a fast paced plot and dynamic and interesting characters (including a demon who names our own questions of fear and doubt), The Wrong Enemy, forces us to think about choices made and what and how we believe (or not believe) in God, in others, and in ourselves. Though I admit there were times when the pace of the plot went to a maddeningly slow speed, its twists and turns surprised me and left me stunned at times. Yet Lebak addresses these themes in a way that draws you into the discussion and away from a sermonesque tone.

I liked this book (which I read as a pdf file via my iPad’s Bluefire Reader app) as it challenged me on several different levels. Notably, how the unfairness of life can create doubt, bitterness, and unresolved pain that damns us in many ways in this life.

I rate this book an ‘outstanding’ read.

Note: I was given a copy of this book in response to the author’ request for a review. I was not required to write a positive review.

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