The Last Guardian by Shane Johnson gets three out of a possible 5 stars in the Shotgun book scale.
If you just pick up the book and start reading, you wont realize that it is really another evangelical attempt at end time fiction.
The author declares himself to be a premillinialist in the afterward. This isn’t any secret though; the seasoned student of eschatology will be able to sense this around chapter 19. (Shotgun Note: While I’m not a premillinialist, I’m not judging downwardly because of the premil. stance taken in this book. In fact, I think the author artfully, and gracefully presents this particular view.)
T.G. Shass, the main character, finds himself repelling down a cliff face (during a violent storm) with his good friend Dave. Dave reaches the bottom first, only to find T.G.’s rope, dangling lifelessly against the cliff. Dave begins to panic, and climbs back up the cliff face, only to find that T.G. has completely disappeared, his rope, merged mysteriously with the rock.
When questioned by the police as to the whereabouts of his friend, Dave is speechless. He is even more surprised when T.G. calls the police station (during Dave’s interrogation) and tells them that he is safely back in N.Y. Dave is flabbergasted, (they were rock climbing in Colorado!)
When the story finally catches back up with T.G. we find that he has been transported to another world, and given a very old and mysterious talisman, which turns out to be the last remaining copy of (this other worlds version of) the Bible.
The Satanically motivated (and empowered) evil regime of Noron, (the alternate reality) is plotting to bring the entire world under the rule of one man. The only thing that stands in their way is the prophesied return of the “Voice in the Dark” who will spread the “truth” to all of Noron, and cause quite a stir.
Jesus Christ Himself, (named Ish) directly chooses T.G. to be Noron’s voice in the dark. And, though the author denies it in the “afterward,” T.G. acts as a sort of messiah figure. (He is even publicly executed, and resurrected after a few days, apparently in keeping with a premil. interpretation of Revelation.)
Ish, working through T.G. and the Ishtians there on Noron, brings about the final battle; a showdown between Ish, and the Satan possessed body of the Anti-Christ. During the confrontation, Satan destroys (physically) the entire population of Noron. It all turns out for the best though, when we realize that all the folks that died, find themselves safely relocated in the descending city of Heaven.
While I don’t agree with Mr. Johnson’s end time view, I do agree that however God chooses to end this present life, it will be an ending shrouded in victory for the Christian.
Shane Johnson weaves a fast paced and interesting tale of victory that is sure to inspire, and entertain any Christian who happens to read it.
I was particularly fascinated with his description of a pre-flood type of Earth.
He uses very vivid imagery to illustrate the complete depravity of a society without Gods word, and if nothing else, this book deserves three stars for that alone.
I highly recommend this book to any one, age 12 and up. (Some of the imagery is a bit to vivid and violent for young children.)