Author: Ralph Sarchie and Lisa Collier Cool
First Published: 2001
Page Count: 352
Film/ TV Adaptation: Yes*
Rating: 4/5 Stars
Shockingly frightening account of an NYPD cop’s encounters with the demonic that will make you sleep with one eye open.
*Hair-Raising Tales *Addition of Prayers
*Confusing Ideology *Author’s Tangents
“Before going out on a case, I put aside my gun and police badge and arm myself with holy water and a relic of the True Cross.” A demonologist by day and an NYPD cop by night, Ralph Sarchie has seen many incredibly dark things in his life. After finding God, Sarchie joined the likes of Ed and Lorraine Warren in fighting the ultimate evil…the devil himself. Deliver Us From Evil chronicles Sarchie’s journey of helping exorcise people of the demons that possess their body, objects, or home and what horrifying evil he has seen these victims subjected to.
Like The Demonologist, this is a solid book on paranormal encounters of the demonic kind if you’re looking for detailed, varied accounts of different hauntings. What sets this book apart, however, is the fact that our narrator also happens to be an NYPD cop. His snit bits about what he sees on the job are just as gruesome as what he describes seeing in demonic encounters, blurring the line between how evil man can be and the evil caused by entities of darkness. The stories of his demonic encounters, whether you want to believe them or not, are twisted and spine chilling, particularly the chapter about the Incubus which forced me to sleep with my dimmed light on for one night. I also enjoyed the addition of the prayers at the back of the book which felt very comforting and welcome after reading about all that darkness. Even if you aren’t religious, I think it’s a nice touch so that the reader could see what words are said during the exorcisms the author describes in the book.
The thing I struggled with the most was the author’s ideology about combating the demonic. He claims to be a student of Ed and Lorraine Warren, but from reading their book The Demonologist, their ideas on what it takes to fight the devil seem to be slightly disjointed from Sarchie’s. It seemed to me from reading their books and watching interviews of Lorraine that only someone of the Catholic faith could take on the task of exorcising a home or person of the demonic, but Sarchie allows people of all faiths, as long as that faith is positive towards their God, to join him on his encounters. If you’re fighting a being whose storyline is specific to the Catholic faith, I would think you would only have Catholic followers fighting off said entity; it’d be a black and white issue. Other religions don’t believe in the Catholic version of the devil or the narrative is a bit different, so why would they be fighting a being they don’t believe in? I guess it’s not crucial I get this straight since I won’t be loading up on Holy Water to fight Satan anytime soon….or ever, but that did confuse me. I also thought the author went off into a lot of tangents about other cases that, while very interesting, would also segway into another series of tangents or would be so long that I would forget what the main story of the chapter was about.
Books on this subject can be hit or miss. I’ve found they must have the perfect balance of detailed writing, believability, and the fright factor. While the book is not perfect, it’s one I would recommend adding to your list if you’re interested in delving into the subject. And another recommendation might also be not to read this book before bedtime; if you are able to sleep soundly, you have nerves of steel my friend.
*Film Adaptation: ( Starring Eric Bana 2014)