The Ishbane Conspiracy


The Ishbane Conspiracy

Four friends enter a new year with idealistic goals for the future, unaware the next twelve months will mark the biggest changes of their lives. As they rejoice together and struggle through tragedy, Jillian, Brittany, Ian, and Rob are not alone. A battle rages, and they're in the middle of it. With cosmic stakes, two armies fight over them—one seeks their victory, the other their destruction.

Jillian is picture-perfect on the outside, but on the inside is terrified of losing control. Brittany is a brilliant tough girl who trusts no one. Ian is a successful athlete who dabbles in the occult. And Rob is a former gang-banger who struggles with guilt, pain, and a newfound faith in God.

During one unforgettable year, these four college students find themselves in a series of battles between light and darkness. Threatened by competing worldviews and the lures of a culture of death—including the occult—they must take drastic steps to resist and survive.

As spiritual warfare rages around them, a demonic correspondence takes place. Readers eavesdrop on the enemy, overhearing his strategies to deceive and destroy the youth culture in general, and these four in particular.

Read an excerpt (pdf)

Product Details

  • Written by Angela, Karina and Randy Alcorn
  • Softcover
  • 296 pages

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Major components of The Ishbane Conspiracy

  • Kids longing, yearning for something greater to give them meaning
  • Dead-end streets—the world's unfulfilled promises
  • Generation gap
  • Communication with family and peers
  • Assumed salvation (Jill thinks she's a Christian, but isn't)
  • Goth, dark, occult (Ouija board, tarot cards, Halloween)
  • Music
  • Internet
  • Eating disorders
  • Depression, despair, Suicide
  • Dating
  • Sexual immorality, sexual purity (secondary virginity)
  • Abortion
  • School classroom issues
  • Cynicism, frustration
  • Anger
  • Hopelessness
  • School violence
  • Choosing a college
  • Peer pressure—negative and positive
  • Body of Christ—impact of church and youth group
  • Radical Christianity—following Christ with abandonment
  • Courage: speaking up for Christ, even when it's unpopular
  • Adults learning to raise the bar rather than lower it for kids
  • Encouragement and hope for Millennial generation—there's a better way than the world offers; that way's in King Jesus

Not a dark despairing book, but an honest hopeful eye-opening book that deals head-on with the kingdom of darkness. The Ishbane Conspiracy integrates some hot areas, including fiction, youth, and spiritual warfare. It's a book parents can give to kids and kids can give to parents, as well as each other. We think it will stimulate some great discussion, starting with "is this really how it is?"

Note from the Authors

The main characters in The Ishbane Conspiracy are eighteen, nineteen and twenty years old. It's a book about young people and the struggles thrust upon them by their culture and the enemies of their souls. But while it's a book about youth (and their families), it's not just a book for youth. This isn't a "youth novel." It's an adult novel with main characters who happen to be young. It's as much for people in their thirties, fifties and seventies as for people in their teens and twenties. 

How can adults and teenagers enjoy the same book? The same way both enjoy many of the same movies. "October Sky" was about kids. Remember the Titans was about high-schoolers. Yet most adults loved both movies. The central characters in The Chronicles of Narnia are children, but countless adults read them over and over. Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer have teenage main characters. Yet grandfathers enjoy them as much as grandchildren, and often more. No one thinks of them as "teen novels." Likewise, Lord of the Flies is a story of boys, but it's not just a story for boys. 

Of course, we're not foolish enough to consider The Ishbane Conspiracy a classic, but the point is valid—a story can have main characters who are young without being exclusively or even primarily a book for the young.

I receive many letters from teens and even preteens who have read my "adult" novels, DeadlineDominionEdge of Eternity and Lord Foulgrin's Letters. Interestingly, when they write, these young readers rarely talk about the teenagers in those books (such as Carly in Deadline, and Ty or Gangster Cool in Dominion). Rather, they connect with the main characters, who are adults. Often their favorite character in Deadline is a young boy, Little Finn. Their favorite in Dominion is an old man, Obadiah Abernathy.

Similarly, Dominion is centered on the lives of African Americans, but is not "an African American novel." Most of its readers aren't black. The primary characters in my novels tend to be men. But women read them as much as men do.

Just as the young can enjoy reading about the old, and whites about blacks, and women about men, the older can enjoy reading about the younger. This is one of the great benefits of reading a good story-entering into another person's world and coming away with a better understanding of real people. My daughters and I hope parents and grandparents and uncles and aunts will gain from The Ishbane Conspiracy a greater understanding and appreciation of today's young people, the battles they fight, and the joy they seek. I expect even more young people will read this novel than my previous ones. But I hope no fewer older people will read it, because it is for them as much as any book I've ever written.

My daughters Angela and Karina helped me write this book. It was my first collaboration since writing a book with my wife Nanci fifteen years ago, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I can't think of two people more qualified and skilled, in both the spiritual and artistic senses, I could have worked with. We read and discussed books on fiction writing, brainstormed characters and plots, stimulated each other's thinking, prayed together, had lots of fun and shared the frustrations and mind-numbing hard work of disciplined writing. Angela and Karina are true co-authors, not token ones. This is their book as much as it's mine, and they have my deepest respect. 

Angela, Karina and I—along with their mom Nanci—are pleased to offer this book to our Lord Jesus. We pray He'll use it to make readers of all ages aware of the spiritual battles we face. May our eyes be opened to the strategies our accursed enemies are using to sabotage the lives of young people. And may they also see in a new light the King's joyful alternative.

"Sometimes the best way to see a thing is to look at its opposite."
A.W. Tozer, The Pursuit of God