Communion is a book by
American ufologist and horror
author Whitley Strieber that was
first published in February of 1987.
The book is based on
Strieber's own alleged experiences with non-human, possibly
was a Number 1 New York Times
bestseller in the Non-Fiction category, and was on the list for
fifteen weeks in hardcover and for thirty-six weeks in paperback.
Hardcover sales neared 300,000. Paperback sales exceeded 2,000,000.
It was the 3rd bestselling mass market paperback of 1988.
A 2008 trade paperback edition presents a new preface by the
The cover painting of an alien was rendered by Ted Seth Jacobs
. The painting is considered
one of the most widely-recognized popular culture images of a
" alien. "The Communion cover,"
Jacobs recounts, "was painted in my small apartment on East 83rd
St, in New York City. Whitley sat with me first for a drawing of
the Alien. As I sketched, he would indicate how to change the
portrait so that it would more match what he saw. It was, I
believe, the process used by police sketch artists. Every last
detail was corrected according to his instructions. At one point,
he said the image corresponded exactly to what he had seen. With
Whitley beside me for the subsequent session, I began to paint the
image on a wooden prepared panel, going through the same process as
for the drawing, until Whitley finally said the image was exact.
...As to the gender of the Alien image, to tell the truth, the
subject didn't come up. I don't even know if the 'greys' have
gender as we understand it. Whitley corrected the developing image
to have a certain fragility, a vulnerability. I suppose we
Earthlings usually associate these qualities with
The book was later made into a film
directed by Philippe Mora
- Communion: A True Story by Whitley Strieber, Avon Books, paperback,
1995. ISBN 0-380-70388-2
- Colin Groves in Skeptical - a Handbook of Pseudoscience and
the Paranormal, ed Donald Laycock, David
Brown, Imagecraft, Canberra, 1989, ISBN 0731657942, p. 4
- Bueche, W., "Ted Seth Jacobs: An interview with the
artist" URL accessed Aug 18, 2008(1999)
The band PG.99
's song "By the Fireplace in
White" contains someone reading passages from the book at the end
of the song.
Swedish Progressive Metal band Evergrey
wrote their 2001 concept album, In
Search of Truth
, around the ideas presented in "Communion"
after the band's singer Tom S. Englund read the book.