This Week in Mormon Literature, November 5, 2011

Monsters & Mormons and Fires in the Pasture are finally available, giving readers a cornucopia of pulpy and lyrical pleasure of the Mormon-ist kind. Josh Allen and James Goldberg step up to the plate and make some big proposals. Three bestselling authors put out Christmas books.  Condie, Corria, George, and Farland have new YA fantasy works that are sure to please, and Brown and Clark produced new literary novels through small Mormon presses. Please send any suggestions or announcements to mormonlit AT gmail DOT com.

Short story and poetry anthologies

Monsters & Mormons, a short story (and some poems) anthology, edited by Theric Jepson and Wm Morris, is now available as an ebook download, and will be available in print on November 11, when a virtual launch party will be held.  The anthology is being published by Jepson’s Peculiar Pages. See A Motley Vision for the details. It is an exciting collection, with some great authors contributing to it. See the list at the bottom of this post.

Emily Milner provides an excerpt from her story “The Living Wife”, which appears in Monsters & Mormons, at Segullah.

The Halloween-themed BCC Zeitcast #74 podcast includes an interview with Theric about Monsters and Mormons

Fire in the Pasture, Tyler Chadwick, editor. Peculiar Pages. October 2011. This is another exciting new collection, the first serious new collection of Mormon poets since the Eugene England and Dennis M. Clark-edited Harvest in 1989. That work’s excellence has been rightly lauded and it will never lose its place in Mormon letters. Yet over twenty years have passed and it is now time for a new volume of poetry to take its place in the canon

Chadwick continues to publish a post a day commenting on the poems in the collection, at Tumbler.

Douglas T. Talley. Adam’s Dream. Parables Publishing, October. Poetry. Ebook only, for now.

News and Blog Posts

Two Mormon-related authors had their essays mentioned in 2011 Best American Essays  as “notable essays”. One was Patrick Madden for “Writer Michael Martone’s Leftover Water”, an ebay listing of backwashed water left by a writer after a reading at BYU.  The other was Therese Doucet, a former Mormon (I am not sure what the title of her essay was). Madden also had an “notable essay” noted in 2010 Best American Essays.  

There has been an exciting series of posts about how to spread the word about Mormon literature this week. Irreantum editor Josh Allen kicked it off with AML and Student Participation at Dawning of a New Day. Wm Morris replied with Why Mormon Culture is Important to the Future of Mormonism at A Motley Vision. Finally James Goldberg made a bold proposal to create an online Mormon literary venue at Evangelizing Mormon Lit: How to Lure the Audience Out of Its Shell.  The AML and Student Participation post has also developed into a discussion about the the precarious present and possible futures of AML.

Scott Hales, at The Low-Tech World, gives us 500 Words on the Cultural Work of Mormon Fiction, about how novels and other literary texts “both reflect ‘the way a culture thinks about itself’ and participate in what I call cultural projects, or efforts toward cultural change.” He suggests that the recent “I’m a Mormon” campaign’s celebration of atypical Mormons may be part of a mainstream shift away from the CleanFlicks aesthetic towards the diversity of Faithful Realism. Very intriguing.

A Slate interview with Mike Allred about The Golden Plates, his Book of Mormon graphic novel series, his independent Mormon faith, and his takes on current politics.

Ships of Hagoth, An Experiment in LDS Critical Theory, is a new literary blog by Jake Clayson and Jacob Bender, who appear to be recent BYU students (correct me if I am wrong). Some recent posts include Recognizing The Recognitions at Deseret Book, comparing a part of the William Gaddis novel where art dealers sell forgeries to wealthy patrons to the practice of selling 1830 Book of Mormon reproductions at Deseret Book, and “By the Power of Greyskull” and Other Answers to Nietzsche’s Questions, about Mormon interest in speculative fiction.

Call for Paper Proposals for the next AML Conference, which will be held on April 21, 2012.

Keepapitchinin is running another serial story from the Mormon magazine archives.  This time it is “Orchids in the Snow”, by Rosa Lee Lloyd, an 8-part story which was published in the Relief Society Magazine in 1960.  Ardis says: “We’ve been in the heat of the southwestern deserts; time to head for the frozen north. And we’ve read stories that ended in weddings; time for one that begins there.”  Part 1, Part 5 (you can find the other chapters from there).

Mark Wilcox at Modern Mormon Men says, “Dear Ender’s Game Movie: Please Don’t Be Twilight.”  Many in the comments section took exception with Wilcox’s too-personal dismissal of Stephanie Myers, and his apparent stance that if protagonists act in a Mormon-themed story act in Mormon-inappropriate ways, then that reflects badly on the author.

In honor of the release of Monsters & Mormons, Scott Hales, at The Low-Tech World, reprints John Lyon’s “Murder Will Out”: 19th Century Mormon Pulp, a classic ghost story which first appeared in the June 1883 issue of The Contributor.  Some of my ancestors were part of an emigration group from England led by Lyon, and we have a detailed history of their passage from Lyon’s diary, which I appreciate.

In “Jacob Black, Pedophile?” Jana Reiss blogs about Elaine Heath’s The Gospel According to Twilight: Women, Sex, and God and her “hard-hitting critique of the novels’ more disturbing messages about women and the violence that’s perpetrated against them throughout the series.”

Heather Moore, Meridian Magazine, “Do We Have ‘Miltons and Shakespeares of our Own?”

Magazines and short stories

The Fall 2011 issue of Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought is out. I can’t tell from the online table of contents whether it has any fiction.  Maybe William MacKinnon’s “Pomp, Circumstance, and Controversy”?  There also appears to be a review by Karen Rosenbaum of Jack Harrell, probably his 2010 short story collection.

The Dialogue website includes a preview article from the next issue, an article by Mormon musical scholar Michael Hicks on The Book of Mormon musical, called Elder Price—Superstar.

Fantastic Reviews Blog review of Brad R. Torgersen’s December 2011 Analog story, “Ray of Life”, very positive. Also an interview with Torgersen.

Dave Farland: new science fiction story, “Against Eternity,” up at Lightspeed Magazine. Written in second person, future-tense.

New books, and their reviews

Glenn Beck. The Snow Angel. Mecury Ink, October 25. Christmas inspirational. Co-written with Nicole Baart. Mercury Ink is Beck’s imprint at Simon and Schuster. A novel about family, forgiveness, and the freedom to live a future free of the past.  Like Beck’s first Christmas novel, The Christmas Sweater, there is also a Children’s illustrated book version, by Beck and Deseret Book-editor Chris Schoebinger, illustrated by Brandon Dorman.  “The story of two siblings, who yearn for new toys and a fun vacation, but their parents are struggling and cannot give them what they want. Though their disappointment is obvious, their grandmother tells them the story of a young girl whose family also went through hard times. Before her father has to leave to find work, he makes a snow angel, telling his little girl that no matter where he is, there will always be an angel looking out for her and her mother, helping the brother and sister realize the true meaning of family.” Beck says it is about family abuse. 

Marilyn Brown. Fires of JerusalemParables, Oct. 31. Historical fiction. Available now as an Ebook, paper version to come. About Jeremiah and the disintegrating Jewish society before and during the Babylonian invasion. Lehi is a side character.  The latest novel by one of the stalwarts of Mormon literature.

David Clark. The Death of a Disco Dancer. Zarahemla Books, Oct. General fiction. First novel. When forty-something Todd returns home to help his dying mother, he reflects on that pivotal summer of 1981: the unique relationship he developed with his grandmother, the chaos of finding his place in a large Mormon family, the near misses of impressing the one-and-only Jenny Gillette, and the utter social catastrophe of junior high. An early version of part of the story appeared as the short story “Rock, Squeak, Wheeze” in Sunstone, December 2004.

Ally Condie. Crossed. Penguin, Nov. 1.  Dystopian fantasy. Second in the bestselling Matched trilogy.

Kirkus Reviews: Starred review. “Cassia and Ky grapple with secrets, wilderness and the tumultuous meanings of love in the second installment of this addictive, layered dystopic trilogy . . . Both rich and easy to digest, this will leave fans hungry for the third book . . . Although two-boys-one-girl triangles run rife in this genre, Condie’s is complicated and particularly human, involving real emotional scars. While more loosely woven than Matched (2010), this volume has its own boons, including non-linear travel through a rough canyon and critical interpretations of Tennyson’s symbolism, which could change their world. Questions—about Cassia’s vulnerability to the Society’s pills, about the Enemy’s identity and the Rising’s true nature—hover for next time. Both rich and easy to digest, this will leave fans hungry for the third book.”

Publishers Weekly: “Condie’s sequel to her acclaimed Matched is very much a middle book, centering on a transformative journey and setting up the finale to come. Newcomers will need to read the first book for background, but vivid, poetic writing will pull fans through as Condie immerses readers in her characters’ yearnings and hopes.”   

Deseret News. The website calls this a “book review”, but it is not, it is a feature story.  Fans of Fiction

Larry Correia. Spellbound. Baen, Nov. 1. Urban hardboiled fantasy, set in an alternative 1930s. Grimnoir Chronicles, book II.  Sequel to Hard Magic. Correia completes his four-novels in a year run for 2011.

Elitist Book Reviews.  “I feel like Correia’s plotting is better. He’s good at having a very defined focus for what he wants to accomplish in the novel. As a result, I never really felt like this book was the middle book in a series or purely setup. It has a life–and a vibrant one at that–of its own.
Do I even need to mention the action? I mean, really? The day Larry Correia stops writing awesome action sequences is the day I will recommend Dan Brown as the greatest ever (never going to happen). We’ve got giant monsters and freaking robots in SPELLBOUND. And a samurai. And more demons. Yeah.”

Richard Paul Evans. Lost December. Simon & Schuster, Nov. 1. Christmas inspirational. A contemporary prodigal son story.

New York Journal of BooksDeseret News.

David Farland, Nightingale. East India Press, Oct. 28. YA fantasy. An enhanced ebook. Includes 100 illustrations and animations, soundtrack, and annotations and pictures from the author. Farland co-founded East India Press, hopes it will be part of a new type of publishing.

Hippies, Beauty, and Books. “Everything flowed so easily. The fantastic writing, the pace, and the word-smithing were simply spot-on. It felt like I was experiencing the book, not just reading it. So many digital pages had music and small clips of comic-like motion images that really enhanced the reading process. Throughout the text, there are links with Author’s Notes which gives the reader a little more insight into certain phrases or current events, or just the author’s thoughts on whatever is going on. There are also short videos with the author which I found really interesting. It definitely was a completely new experience for me to dive into!”

Jessica Day George. Tuesdays at the Castle. Bloomsbury USA, Oct. 25. Middle-grade fantasy. 11-year old princess, a magic castle that changes its shape on a whim, and books.  First of a new series.  

Kirkus Reviews.  “This enjoyable romp turns mischief into political action and a stone palace into a cunning character . . . These kids are clever, as is George’s lively adventure. May pique castle envy.”

Gamila. “This one is a fun read with plenty of laugh out loud moments as both Castle and children play pranks on their enemies to discourage and delay them in their tactics. Celia and her siblings are easy to cheer for because they are smart, strong and united in their loyalty to both Castle Grover and their people. This is a great read for guys and girls, as I have found true of Jessica Day George’s Dragon trilogy also. I sometimes wish the covers were a tad more boy friendly. My husband raced through this one faster than I did and I think the humor appealed to him more. So, anyway, a fun read full of clever pranks, and a charming setting.”

Deseret News. “Young readers will love the pranks that Celie, Rolf and Lilah play on the intruders in the castle. These pranks and antics are complimented by funny and playful dialogue. However, underneath the light-hearted humor is an element of grief and mourning for the loss of the king and queen that was heartbreaking. Even more charming, if it were possible, is the way that Castle Glower responds and assists Celie. While trying to root out the intruders, the castle assists by creating ramps to the offenders rooms so that wheelbarrows of manure can be brought in to put in wardrobes and the bottoms of shoes.”

Mette Ivie Harrison. The Princess and the Horse. Forth book in the Princess and the Hound series. Released this week as a self-published ebook.  Harrison says there are no plans to release it as a print book.

Colleen Houck. Tiger’s Voyage. Splinter/Sterling Children’s Books, Nov. 1.  YA fantasy-romance, third of a best-selling trilogy, all released in 2011.  Girl, two shape-shifting Indian princes/tigers, and dragons. Another paranormal love triangle. 

Steven L. Kent.  The Clone Redemption. Ace, Oct. 25. Science fiction. 7th in the Star Wars-inspired series.

Brenda Novak. In Close. Mira, Oct. 25. Suspense. 3rd in the Bulletproof trilogy, just two months after #2.

Anne Perry. A Christmas Homecoming. Ballantine, Oct. 25. Christmas suspense. Features a character from the Charlotte and William Pitt novels. This is the tenth Christmas novel Perry has written.

Loraine Scott. NYC: Murder Brooklyn Style. American Fork Arts Council Press, Oct. 13. Cozy missionary mystery. Summer Winder Mission series, book 2. Sequel to NYC: A Mission To Die For.  An older sister missionary and a murder mystery, that is a new combination!

RaeAnne Thayne. Christmas in Cold Creek. Harlequin, Oct. 18. Romance.

New reviews of previous books

Tracy Hunter Abramson, Obsession (LDSWBR). Shanda: Obsession was definitely a page-turner for me. The pace was consistent, and I was always wondering what would happen next, whether in the serial killer investigation or Kendra and Charlie’s relationship. I had a suspicion of who the killer was but didn’t feel confident about it until closer to the end. I give Obsession 4.5 stars out of 5 and recommend it to anyone who likes a clean, well-written mystery-suspense with a nice romantic element.  Sheila: I recommend Obsession to readers that love a novel filled with a blooming romance, mysterious stalkers, FBI agents and finding God again in your life. Nice job to Traci on another well written novel that her fans will not want to miss reading. Mindi: Traci can sure write crazy well! The stalker was very disturbing and determined to have Kendra at all costs. All the characters jump off the page, were written well, and believable. There is action, romance, and a nut job possible serial killer, what else do you need in a book? 4 out of 5 stars for me.

Michael R. Collings, The Slab (Heroes of Horror).

Brandon Bell, The Road Show (Moriah Jovan, GoodReads). 2.5 stars. “Goodreads defines 2 stars as “It was okay.” This is where I must put all my caveats because it was MORE than okay; it was actually pretty good, but:  . . . (lists four caveats) . . . It was well written for what it was. The author has a good running start at learning how to write a novel, which I think he should exploit. Writing a novel is an entirely different skillset from writing a script. The author writes very well, but needs to develop a novelist’s mindset. I hope he does so.”

Mette Ivie Harrison, Tris and Izzie (Orson Scott Card, Uncle Orson’s Reviews)(scroll ¾ of the way down).  “Harrison jumps from her deep-and-dark stories into a completely different mood. Comedy. Truthful comedy, because it is Harrison writing it, but this story is funny all the way through.  It’s also great adventure . . . Think of it as a funny antidote to Twilight-mania. And this time the hero is actually a hero, and not a blood-sucking impossibility.”

C. J. Hill (Janette Rallison). Slayers. Booklist: “More than a worthy equal of the works of Rick Riordan or Christopher Paolini.”

Stephanie Humphreys, Double Deceit. (Sheila, LDSWBR), 4.5 stars. “One of the things I really liked about this book was the constant angst that was there. There is the feeling that something is off, but you and Elaina just can’t figure it out. Stephanie wrote this part of the novel so well, that you find you are as uptight as the main character . . . The Romance and the kisses are a nice addition to Double Deceit. None of it is over the top and still allows the suspense to take the front seat. The main characters in the story are LDS, but this is not a doctrinal book at all, but focuses more about values and trusting in God again. Even though many of the chapters are centered around everyday events like going to work, this book is well paced and it was a fast read. I felt like there was always momentum with the storyline . . . You will love Double Deceit, if you enjoy reading an angst filled mystery, thrown in with a crazy stalker and topped off with a handsome boss, who is also a good kisser. Well done Stephanie!  I hope that you will write more mystery/suspense books.”

Jenni James, Pride and Popularity (Jane Austen Reviews). 

Josi S. Kilpack, Pumpkin Roll (Jennie Hansen, Meridian Magazine). “A thoroughly creepy mystery–with a plethora of recipes thrown into the bargain.  If, like me, you’re not into reading recipes, just skip them and concentrate on a great mystery with a super sized helping of suspense . . . In previous books in this series, I didn’t find Sadie a likable or sympathetic character, but in Pumpkin Roll her snoopiness is softened to curiosity and concern, she doesn’t whine or indulge in self pity, and she’s far more cautious and inclined toward common sense in her approach to dangerous situations.  I found myself liking her a great deal. The other characters are portrayed realistically and the three little boys are a delight and even though they’re children and don’t play a major role, there is a subtle amount of growth that takes place even in them. The plot in Pumpkin Roll is crafted so smoothly, the escalation of events builds the tension to a spine tingling point in what feels like an effortless climb until the precipice suddenly looms ahead.  At that point the mystery ends, but the suspense explodes.  Kilpack has written many enjoyable novels, but I think this is her most finely crafted one yet.”

Kimberley Griffiths Little, Circle of Secrets (Bloggin’ ‘bout Books). B+. “With colorful bayou settings, rich in wonder and magic, Kimberley Griffiths Little brings her poignant family stories to vivid life. Her debut, The Healing Spell, touched my heart, but her newest engaged both my ticker and my imagination and, really, there’s nothing I like better in a book. Just in time for Halloween, Circle of Secrets is a Cajun ghost story that’s spooky enough to send delicous little shivers down the spine, but not scary enough to cause nightmares. In fact, it’s the perfect blend of natural terrors (gators, bullies, abandonment) and supernatural frights (ghosts, bumps in the night, etc.), which combine to make this a shivery, atmospheric read. Mostly, though, it’s a warm, enchanting story about a young girl coming to terms with her imperfect family and, of course, herself. In case you can’t tell, I loved it.”

Kimberley Griffiths Little, Circle of Secrets (Sheila, LDSWBR). 4.5 stars. “Last year I read one of the most incredible books, called The Healing Spell. It had such charm and substance to the story, and was based in the bayou of Louisiana. The story was full of strong characters and Cajun magic. Kimberley’s newest book, Circle of Secrets, is no different. It also has that magical feel to the story; this time it includes ghosts, real and figuratively. Though there is a feeling of awe and mystery concerning the ghost, there is nothing there that would scare someone younger reading this story . . . Circle of Secrets is beautifully written, with sweet southern charm, and a story of renewed love between a mother and a daughter.”

Gregg Luke, Bloodborne (Deseret News). “Unfortunately, Cross’s enemies prove themselves to be completely inept at being bad guys. The result is that at no point does the reader get the sense that the protagonists are in any real danger . . . This is unfortunate, because beside this single flaw, “Bloodborne” has many things to recommend to Mormon readers. The characters feel real, the concept of the book is compelling, and Luke clearly did his research for this novel. The romance between Cross and Flannery is interesting without turning corny or becoming sexual in any way, and Luke has a way with exposition.”

Kay Lynn Mangum, When the Bough Breaks (Framed and Booked).  4.5 out of 5. “I like this author.  She writes LDS fiction that is believable, deals with tough issues such as teen alcoholism, and presents a subdued picture of LDS faith that is refreshing.” 

Rachel Ann Nunes, Before I Say Goodbye (Jennie Hansen, Meridian Magazine). “Rachel Nunes has taken a premise every parent has nightmares about and numerous writers and poets have turned into a sentimental sob fest.  Only, Nunes’s version is neither overly sentimental nor cheesy.  I’m not saying most readers won’t shed a tear over Before I Say Goodbye , but there is something honest and real about the emotion this story evokes . . . Nunes has a rare talent for creating believable characters and she excels at having them deal with hard challenges. Over and over she has proved capable of closing the link between readers and characters so that the reader feels what the character feels. The major characters in this book are real; their growth is believable and they mature and develop in a touching and enduring way.  I found the ward members a little idealized and their acceptance of Rikki a bit too easy; they’re more the way a ward should be rather than the way most wards are in reality with a wide range of commitment and follow through, acceptance and indifference. The characters rather than the plot carry the story, though the plot moves smoothly and holds the reader’s attention. I’ve been reading and enjoying Nunes’s novels for many years, ever since she wrote Ariana which always remained my favorite, but with Before I Say Goodbye, I think I’ve found a new favorite.”

Janette Rallison, My Fair Godmother. (Mindy, LDSWBR). “I LOVED this book.  It is so well written.  I loved the humor, characters, cleverness, and especially the story line.  I thought it was so clever having the first part be Chrissy’s report, so fun!  Everything comes together so smooth and it’s full of very fun twists.  I’ve said this before, I love reading books I can pass to my girls without hesitation, this book tops the list. 5 out of 5 stars.” 

Obert Skye, Wonkenstein: The Creature From My Closet (Deseret News).

Mandi Tucker Slack, The Alias (Deseret News).

Robison Wells, Varient (LDSWBR). Shanda: “I started to read Variant and didn’t put it down, even for dinner. I found the writing smooth and engaging. Both the characters and the story were intriguing to me . . . I give Variant 5 stars out of 5 for going above and beyond what I expected, which honestly was a lot. Young adult fiction is the genre I am the most picky about after being disappointed in content and quality several times. I don’t read much YA so I am thrilled to have enjoyed Variant as much as I did.”  Sheila: This book is such a great mix of a dystopian theme and a surprising dash of sci-fi. The writing is clean and the characters are distinct. I can’t wait to find out where the story will go from here. It all reminds me of mice in a cage running through tubes, they never realize that they are not getting anywhere. Is this what Benson is going to find out? If you are curious as to what I mean…well, you are just going to have to read the book. It is a five star, totally fantastic YA book that I will read again and again.”  Mindy: “I need to say this first—Variant blew me away. I loved every page. I started on a Saturday afternoon and finished that night.  Variant starts off very strong and doesn’t let go until the last sentence. Even then I was left with my mouth open. This book is so well-written. The characters, whether good or bad, were amazing. The surprise twist had me screaming and saying, “No way this is happening!” My husband was teasing me while I read because I had my hand to my mouth and gasped many times . . . 5 out of 5 stars. Absolutely superb. Smooth writing and non-stop action.”


Deseret News article on the reopening of the Little Brown Theatre in Springville.

The CenterPoint Legacy Theatre’s production of the musical Sleepy Hollow, at the Davis Center for the Performing Arts, Centerville Utah, October 17 through November 12. The book and lyrics were written by Weber State University Theater Program Director Jim Christian, who also directs the show, and the music was written by Tom Edward Clark.

The reviewer of Sleepy Hollow at the Utah Theater Bloggers raved about the production and acting. “The ambiance of the stage helped the audience get ready for the evening . . . I was quite impressed with the lighting and the beginning set. The audience was transported to a woody area in the hollow, and we were actually able to see fireflies on the backdrop sky, fully transporting us into the story . . . Much praise should be given to the production team. Austin Hull as set designer deserves praise for truly bringing the town of Sleepy Hollow to life. I was quite taken by the little details with each set piece, for instance the organ in the church, with its pipes having apparently become bent and worn with the passing of time and haunting of the village . . . The evening was overall quite enjoyable, and it is wonderful to see new musical theater works coming out of Utah. I will say that the show felt long, and that there were some parts of the story that felt cumbersome. The number of characters and story lines seemed to slightly take away from the ability of characters to add depth to their performance.”


The makers of the Ender’s Game movie, to be directed by Gavin Hood, recently put out casting calls, indicating that the film is finally moving ahead.

KevinB at LDS Cinema Online reviews the Church-produced short film Johnny Lingo (1969), and gives it a B-. Kevin replies to Holly Welker’s criticism of the film as sexist, and does a long, interesting analysis of Johnny’s possible choices, and how they could have impacted island society.  He concludes, “Like Saturday’s Warrior — another older LDS “classic” — Johnny Lingo may be beyond criticism in 2011.  Most LDS have either seen it and formed an opinion, or have already ignored it.  It has seemingly survived through the years more because it has an cute and interesting concept with many quotable lines than because of a compelling message.  Everyone knows that women should feel valued, but by presenting a moral that is strangely detached from any practical applicability in modern times makes Johnny Lingo more of a unique curiosity than a compelling and meaningful film.”

LDS Film Festival deadline for enteries is Nov. 21.

HottieBoombaLottie review (Edge Philadelphia). “Packard as Ethan is adorable and winning, but as a director and writer, he is a master of unpredictable dialogue and comedic timing. Not only does he know when to get out of a joke for maximum effect (he’s also the film’s editor), on the flip side, he knows when to extend a joke to the point of aching ridiculousness. (Again, I reference the underwear gag. My stomach hurt from laughing.) He understands that the funny things that we do in life aren’t always zip-bang moments of “gotcha” dialogue, but rather, graceless moments of uncomfortable reality. He also effectively allows the actors to adapt that kind of apathetic lilt to their delivery that rings true, rather than having everyone sound like they just stepped out of a sitcom.”

New York Times Bestseller lists, November 6th, 13th 

Hardcover Fiction

x, #4 THE SNOW ANGEL, by Glenn Beck (1st week). 10th on the Combined Print & E-book list.  The Christmas Sweater debuted at #1 in 2008, will The Snow Angel get up that high?

x, #35 A CHRISTMAS HOMECOMING, by Anne Perry

Trade Fiction Paperback

#19, #24 HOTEL ON THE CORNER OF BITTER AND SWEET, by Jamie Ford (69th week). Holding steady.

Mass Market Paperback

#20, x  TOWERS OF MIDNIGHT, by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson. (2nd week)

#30, x  DARK PERIL, by Christine Feehan.

Children’s Chapter Books

#8 MICHAEL VEY: THE PRISONER OF CELL 25, by Richard Paul Evans (6th week). Back after being off the list for a few weeks.

Children’s Paperback

#7, #7 MATCHED, by Ally Condie (6th week). Holding steady.

Children’s Series

#5, #8 THE MAZE RUNNER TRILOGY, by James Dashner (3rd week).  Down from #2.  

#6, #10 HUSH, HUSH SAGA, by Becca Fitzpatrick (4th week). Down from #5.

#10, #9 THE TWILIGHT SAGA, by Stephenie Meyer (192nd week).  Back on the list after a few months absence.

Hardcover Graphic books

#1, #1 TWILIGHT: THE GRAPHIC NOVEL, VOL. 2 (3rd week).


List of stories from Monsters & Mormons

  •  “Other Duties” by Nathan Shumate
    Sometimes LDS bishops get special callings; sometimes that means being the agent bishop for battling demons.
  • “The Living Wife” by Emily Milner
    Newly married for time and all eternity, a young wife must deal with the meddling ghosts of her two dead predecessors.
  • “Baptisms for the Dead” by C. Douglas Birkhead
    Two Mormon missionaries continue to pound the pavement after a zombie apocalypse.
  • “Pirate Gold for Brother Brigham” by Lee Allred
    Pirate ghosts have been spotted on the Great Salt Lake—and they want something.
  • “First Estate” by Katherine Woodbury
    The story of Ruth is reenacted in space—with an alien Boaz.
  • “Fangs of the Dragon” by David J. West
    Porter Rockwell finds intrigue and strange creatures while on assignment in Logan, Utah.
  • “Between Husband and Wife and the Late Bram Stoker”
    “I Lie in Bed Reading from Mosiah Chapter Three and Think of You, Lon Chaney, Jr.” by Will Bishop
    Two poems mesh the Mormon with the monsterish.
  • “Charity Never Faileth” by Jaleta Clegg
    A gelatin salad runs amok at Relief Society enrichment night.
  • “Recompense of Sorrow” by W. H. Pugmire
    The H.P. Lovecraft mythos ensnares a Mormon brother and sister.
  • “Mormon Golem” by Steve Morrison
    Joseph Smith fashions a golem—a Porter Rockwell golem.
  • “Bichos” by Erik Peterson
    A Mormon couple honeymooning on the Amazon encounter the beasts in the jungle.
  • “The Blues Devils” by Terrance V. McArthur
    A Mormon musician goes the time-honoured route of making a deal with the devil.
  • “Brother in Arms” by Graham Bradley
    In a post-apocalyptic near future, a pair of Marines must turn to their Mormonism in order to have a chance of fighting the enemy.
  • “George Washington Hill and the Cybernetic Bear” by George Washington Hill and EC Buck
    A pioneer journal entry takes a cybernetic turn.
  • “The Baby in the Bushes” by S.P. Bailey
    Things turn noir for a Mormon PI investigating a murder in Salt Lake City.
  • “Bokev Momen” by D. Michael Martindale
    An abducted young Earthling provides a key to understanding the universal god.
  • “The World” by Danny Nelson
    The World invades the kitchen of a spunky old lady.
  • “Water Spots” by Terresa Wellborn
    A poem mixes the domestic with the horror.
  • “A Letter from the Field” by James Paul Crockett
    Every missionary feels homesick now and then. Is it worse if you never even see the sun?
  • “Let the Mountains Tremble for Adoniha Has Fallen” by Steven L. Peck
    After centuries of no contact the Mormon colony on Mars hears from the Earth it thought it had left behind.
  • “Allow Me to Introduce Myself” by Moriah Jovan
    A Mormon nun battles demons and insecurity in the Louisiana bayou.
  • “Traitors and Tyrants” by John Nakamura Remy and Galen Dara
    Erasmus Snow and his four wives battle ninja monkeys…and something strange.
  • “Experimenting with Life at Extraordinary Depths” by Bridgette Day Tuckfield
    A young woman, now back in the fold and struggling to reacclimate to life as a young single adult, faces her fears on Utah Lake.
  • “I Had Killed a Zombie” by Adam Greenwood
    A young man prays to know which Zombie Battling Organization is true.
  • “Out of the Deep Havi I Howled unto Thee” by Scott M. Roberts
    Battling the spirit of a wolf, a man wanders out into the Utah desert only to find a young woman bleeding to death.
  • “The Mission Story” by Bryton Sampson
    A missionary’s new companion appears to have a bit of the mad scientist in him.
  • “The Eye Opener” by Brian Gibson
    This is why we close our eyes when we pray, children.
  • “The Mountain of the Lord” by Dan Wells
    Not all testimonies are solid as a rock.


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5 Responses to This Week in Mormon Literature, November 5, 2011

  1. Emily M. says:

    Thanks so much for the mention! It has been fun for me to start reading the rest of the Monsters and Mormons anthology. Just a quick note: Segullah is spelled without an “a” in the first syllable (the name is from Hebrew, not related to seagulls ;-) ).

  2. Thanks so much for the mention of my mention on the Best American Essays notable list! The title of the essay is “Farzad, Son of Glory,” and it was first published in Bayou Magazine (University of New Orleans). It’s a short memoir piece about my encounter as recent, still practicing Mormon, BYU grad with an Iranian political refugee during my Fulbright fellowship year in Hamburg, Germany. You can read it at

  3. Beth Bentley says:

    Adam’s Dream was just released yesterday in paperback. I’m still tinkering with the e-book, which at the moment isn’t really for public consumption because the poems need to be set off from one another more. Fires of Jerusalem should be out in paperback next week, and the e-book will be available on Amazon shortly. We also published The Unwilling (Vol. 1 of Children of Lilith) this year by C. David Belt,, and my own A Wandering Star, I’ll be happy to send review copies to anyone who wants them.


  4. Th. says:


    Karen’s essay was indeed on Harrell’s collection. Which is a good collection. (She gave me her copy when she finished.)

    Thanks for the fat plugs for M&M and FitP, Andrew. I’m pretty confident both books will live up to their buzz. (First review of Fit:

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