Into the Out Of by Alan Dean Foster
Into the Out OfThis book was recommended by a student in a computer class. We had one of those “while on break” conversations that meandered to our reading favorites. She and I discovered a similar taste in science fiction and mystery novels. She then immediately asked me if I had ever read this book. She had read it over ten years ago and it still left an impression on her. So off to the library I went.
I can see why it made an impression on her. The shetani, the supernatural evil beings trying to enter Earth from Out Of, are dark, malevolent, and intense. Only a small number have escaped into Earth, but if the Out Of opens, mankind would be overrun by billions of shetani.
Olkeloki is the Maasi leader, or laibon, who is charged with closing the rift of the Out Of in western Africa. He knows he needs a triangle of people, so sets out in search of the two people he needs to complete the task. So he leaves his home and his people to find his companions.
Merry Sharrow is a night operator/salesperson for the Eddie Bauer company. She lives in Seattle. As she is contemplating her current life she decides she needs a vacation. After a frightening encounter hitting a dog with her car one morning, she knows it is time to go. She heads off to Washington, D.C.
Joshua Oak is an FBI agent who works out in the field. He finishes up a mission and goes back to Washington, D.C. He is trying to decide whether to continue at his current job or accept a promotion. After testifying in front of a Senate sub-committee, he wanders down Constitution Avenue towards the Smithsonian in his need to walk and clear his head.
Olkeloki meets Merry and Joshua in Washington. He has to convince them that the shetani exist. Then he has to convince them they need to accompany him to Africa. Olkeloki is an ancient Maasi leader. Joshua doesn’t believe his supernatural imaginings. Merry is drawn to Olkeloki immediately, and is game to go on an adventure. This unlikely trio now have to become a team to work together against the shetani.