I very much agree with the Crabbit Old Bat's views on this subject. To me present tense often lends a dreamy quality rather than more immediacy, though it can be used that way.
I have to say that I use present tense sparingly, though a short story I wrote (from the POV of a cat) had a frame story in the past tense with a flashback in present tense. I just seemed to work better that way round, though the reverse would probably seem the more logical choice.
Nicola Morgan also links to a couple of articles by Philip Pullman about present tense. He's agin it.