t started in Wal-Mart. I was cruising through the book section when Ihappened upon a title that caught my eye:
23 Minutes in Hell
by BillWiese. I picked up a copy and checked out the sell lines on the cover:“One man’s story about what he saw, heard and felt in that place of torment.” On the back cover, the author writes: “My sincere hope isthat this book is the closest you will ever come to experiencing hell foryourself.”Intrigued, I added the book to my shopping cart and took it homeand read it cover to cover. It was by far the most depressing and terrifyingbook I have ever read. In its own way, it eclipsed
(illustrated by Gustav Dore). It was analogous to aHieronymus Bosch painting with Wiese as one of the subjects. (Bosch isfamous for his grotesque depictions of Hell.)At 3:00 AM on the 23
of November, 1998, Wiese and his wifewere soundly sleeping after spending the evening with some close friends.As Wiese tells it, “Suddenly…I found myself being hurled through the air,and then was falling to the ground, completely out of control.