If you're not sure what a Mormon is, let alone a Mormon Mention, allow me to explain: My name is Susan and I'm a Mormon (you've seen the commercials, right?). As a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (commonly known as the Mormon or LDS Church), I'm naturally concerned with how my religion is portrayed in the media. Because this blog is about books, every time I see a reference to Mormonism in a book written by someone who is not a member of my church, I highlight it here. Then, I offer my opinion—my insider's view—of what the author is saying. It's my chance to correct misconceptions, expound on principles of the Gospel, and even to laugh at my (sometimes) crazy Mormon culture.
In The Incident on the Bridge by Laura McNeal, police officer Elaine Lord says this about her partner:
"Skelly was just like her nephews. Money was for buying nice cars, plain and simple. She hadn't wanted to work with him at first because of his various childlike views and because he was a twenty-five-year-old Mormon the size of Sasquatch. It had turned out, though, that he gave her a little of the old hope and ardor. Not a lot of hope and ardor, but a little" (38).
-- Not only did I not expect a Mormon Mention to crop up in a YA mystery novel set in California, but I was surprised by its positive nature. After a little sleuthing (including an email to the kind and patient Laura McNeal), I discovered that the author grew up LDS. Although she now considers herself a secular humanist, she respects her Mormon family and friends and "the grace and strength their faith gives them." This respect is definitely reflected in her portrayal of Skelly.
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