I am new to Craig Parshall’s novels, but wow did I start with a bang with “The Occupied,” a tale of spiritual warfare.
Trevor Black is a former criminal defense lawyer who develops a unique gift — the ability to sense demons, or horribles as he calls them, and their presence in humans. Using this gift, he is dragged into investigating some horrific murders and figuring out the connection between them and himself.
Three distinct sections make up “The Occupied.” The Flesh deals with Trevor’s teen years and his introduction to the dark side of the spirit world. We will eventually see how giving into the flesh impacts Trevor’s future.
The World deals with Trevor’s life as a high-level attorney, some brutal murders, Trevor’s loss of career, and his gain of Christ in his life. It is during this time Trevor learns there is a higher purpose in life, his weapon is the word of the Spirit (the Bible), and that God is always stronger than the enemy.
During The Devil section, Trevor returns home to investigate the murder of a high school friend — and if it is connected to the recent murders in New York City. He begins to realize that he can truly “visualize the true ugliness of the other side,” and learns that Jesus has overcome the world, and through that power Trevor can overcome the dark side.
Parshall does a great job of tying together the three eras in Trevor’s life, and throwing in many awesome spiritual truths. He reminds us that if we truly have faith in God, He will never leave us and will always provide us the tools we need to defeat the enemy. As Rev. John Cannon encourages Trevor: “God’s Word is the road map. But the walking is left up to you. You are not alone. God does not fail. He empowers you. Christ in you, the everlasting hope. But the way is narrow. Sometimes daunting. A thin line, like a razor’s edge.”
“The Occupied” is a great murder mystery and an awesome spiritual warfare novel, with a little bit of legalese and a touch of potential romance. It will send chills down your spine and keep you guessing until the very end. So the only other question to ask is: Who occupies you?
If you are a fan of Frank Peretti, Mike Dellosso or Ted Dekker, you will love Craig Parshall’s newest novel. I really hope there are more Trevor Black novels to come!
And check out an interview with the author below.
Five stars out of five.
Tyndale House Publishers provided this complimentary copy for my honest, unbiased review.
“The Occupied” (a Trevor Black novel) by Craig Parshal