Thursday, July 8, 2010

Close Encounters of the Non-Fiction Kind

I just finished reading Whitley Strieber's, "Communion", which made the #1 spot on the New York Times Bestseller's List (in 19 something...).

This was my first encounter with a book of the alien kind and it scared the hell out of me. That is, before establishing my "no reading of alien books before 8:00pm" rule.

The story follows Strieber in his discoveries of being "visited" by unknown beings throughout most of his life. The story takes you through his initial realizations, doubts, denial, psychological evaluations, hynosis, confirmation, theories, and mild acceptance.

Although I did find it a little convenient that such extraordinary events would happen to an already established horror writer, the book was very good. Although not grammatically or structurally breathtaking, Strieber's theories were extremely thought-provoking and encouraged me to do a little more research of my own.

One parallel he drew that I found particularly interesting was between our myths and perceptions of "aliens" in comparison to those of ancient Gods. He repeatedly compares his encounter with one being in particular to that of "Ishtar", a Babylonian Goddess of "fertility, love, war, and sex" (Wikipedia).

Although the book does tend to jump around a lot and can be redundant in places, I think it is very honest and real. As I read the sometimes scattered thought patterns, I felt all the more inside the author's head, and that I was struggling along with him to understand the happenings. There were also quite a few references to other books on the subject which I am now considering picking up as well.

This is a great book to pop your UFO cherry, if you haven't yet dived into the subject. Although extreme and invasive, Strieber also gives a comforting side to the encounters, which I am greatful for considering my extreme fear on the subject to begin with.

I give this book a scaley, tentacle-covered, alien thumbs up.

I also give an enthusiastic thumbs up to this picture, which I found while searching for a picture of the cover of this book...

I would also like to point out that after criticizing the book's "grammatical integrity", I reviewed my post to find that I had no idea how to even spell the word. Oh well, that's why I'm not an author.


  1. I haven't read this one. I'll just say I have issues when it comes to Strieber. But I've read a couple of other alien books that'll probably scare your pants off. I'll look 'em up when I get home and pass it on. If you're interested in the parallels between alien lore and myth/folklore, I highly recommend Jacques Vallee's books. I believ his classic "Passport To Magonia" is available free online.

  2. Thanks Burt, I always appreciate your input! I'll have to check it out.