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Mainstream Science Fiction and Fantasy
with Latter-day Saint (Mormon) Characters and References
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Avram Davidson and Cynthia Goldstone
"Pebble in Time" in The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction August 1970; also in Laughing Space: Funny Science Fiction (eds. Isaac Asimov and J.O. Jeppson), Houghton Mifflin 1982.
1846; 1970

What if the Mormons bypassed Salt Lake and settled near the San Francisco Bay? Synopsis: A Latter-day Saint invents a time machine, travels back in time, and accidentally prevents Brigham Young and company from stopping in Utah. The pioneers continue on to San Francisco. San Francisco ends up a completely Latter-day Saint city, from which the Latter-day Saints were even more successful in expanding throughout the world.

J. M. DeMatteis
Spider-Man: The Lost Years (Marvel Comics. 3-issue limited series. Later printed a combined volume.)

One of the warmest, most interesting portrayals of Salt Lake City and a Latter-day Saint character ever written by a non-Latter-day Saint science fiction writer was actually in a trio of Spider-Man comic books. Author J. M. DeMatteis, one of comicdom's most critically acclaimed writers, happens to be Hindu. But he apparently spent enough time in SLC to capture the flavor of the city well, and to create Latter-day Saint police detective Jacob Raven. Raven is a devout but delightfully complex character who eventually ends up arresting Peter Parker for a murder (committed by his clone) in the regular Spider-Man series. This "Lost Years" limited series reveals the back story of when Raven's and Spider-Man's paths first crossed in SLC.

In addition to the 3-issue "Lost Years" limited series, the Marvel Chronology Project lists the following other appearances of Jacob Raven, 19 separate comics:
Spider-Man #'s 53, 54, 57, 59, 60
Web of Spider-Man #'s 121, 122, 123, 124, 126
Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #'s 222, 223, 226, 231
Amazing Spider-Man #'s 400, 402, 403
Amazing Spider-Man Unlimited # 9
Scarlet Spider Unlimited # 1

Philip K. Dick
In Milton Lumky Territory. Pleasantville, NY: Dragon Press (1985)
Approx. year of story: 1985

Pg. 140:

"What a place," Lumky said. "I stay here as little as possible. And right across the border from Utah . . ." He pointed. "As soon as you go down there you find yourself in a forest, and then you come out in Logan. That's where I'd like to be. It's clean. All Utah is clean."

"I know," he said. And he thought, This is the extreme edge of Milton Lumky territory. It's frontier.

"In Utah they'd never let this dust blow around," Lumky said, searching for a parking slot. Mud-splattered trucks had most of them already, the work vehicles of a farm area. "They have water running down the gutters. Everything's fertile. They make it that way. It's due to L.S.D."

"L.D.S.," Bruce said.

"That's right. I'm thinking of 'LSMFT.' Of course that's the joker... If you live in Utah you have to join the [LDS] Church. It's a hell of a thing--they won't let you alone. You can't but cigarettes or booze; they look at you funny if you drink coffee..." He found a parking slot and parked the Mercedes. "These people up here [in Montpelier, in contrast to Utah] don't give a damn about anything. The whole town's collapsing in ruins." He got out of the car and stepped up on the sidewalk, fastening his belt; while driving he had undone it.

Pg. 39:
"...She took care of the house and Taffy while I was down in Mexico. Walt's in Utah, in Salt Lake City. He's been there for almost a year... I need somebody I can depend on. I don't have Walt -- I used to depend on him. He's in the galvanized pipe business..."
Pg. 45:
"Walt's on the road a lot, too, like you. Over to Salt Lake City and over to the Coast, to L.A. in particular. That's strange, isn't it . . . to think of you both driving around. He's a factory representative. Conferences and sales meetings."
Pg. 114:
"You mean a long trip?"

"Maybe to L.A. Or to Salt Lake City. Or Portland. Some place where I can find something warehoused..."

[Looking for wholesale typewriters.]
Thomas M. Disch
Camp Concentration. New York: Random House (1999; c. 1968)

The first sentence of the novel refers to the Mormon guard, the narrator's best friend during his time in the Springfield prison, the first setting in the novel. The narrator calls the guard 'R.M.', which stands for 'Returned Missionary' in Latter-day Saint culture. Many references to this guard, pages 1 to 8.

Pg. 1:

Young R.M., my Mormon guard, has brought me a supply of paper at last. It is three months to the day since I first asked him for some. Inexplicable, this change of heart.
Pg. 19:
"It's a regional edition. Time comes out in different regional editions. For advertising purposes. And we get the mountain states edition. The mountain states are Idaho, Utah, Wyoming, Colorado . . ."

D. B. Drumm
Terminal Road. New York: Dell (1986)

Set sixteen years after the Big Nuke-out of 1989. "Traveler" (the main character) is drawn into a civil conflict between traditional Latter-day Saints and non-believers in Salt Lake City.

David Duchovny
"Hollywood A.D.". 18th episode of the 7th season of the popular "X-File" TV series. Directed by Duchovny. (First aired 30 April 2000).

Series star David Duchovny (Mulder) also wrote and directed this inventive episode, featuring regular co-star and Gillian Anderson as Scully. Guest stars Gary Shandling and Tea Leoni play Hollywood actors who play Mulder and Scully in a movie-within-the-episode version of this episode's events.

The FBI case which is the focus of the episode's plot begins as a detailed retelling of real events in Latter-day Saint history from the 1980s. The X-Files story has a master forger named "Mike Hoffman" creating fake "ancient" documents intended to embarrass the Catholic Church, which he then sells to an archbishop who is one of the next in line to become the Pope. The faked documents indicated that Jesus was married to Mary Magdalene. The main events and many of the details of this X-Files story are, of course, based on the case of real-life forger Mark Hoffman who generated supposedly historical documents dating back to the earliest days of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which he then sold to the Church through Pres. Gordon B. Hinckley, one of the leaders next in line to become the President of the Church. (The name of the archbishop is based on "Hinckley," though not as obviously as the "Mark Hoffman" - "Mike Hoffman" connection.) Just as happened in the real story, the X-Files story has Hoffman creating a bomb, and then becoming a victim of his own bomb.

Many other details from actual events are used in the episode, but the story twists entirely from its source material when it turns out that "Mike" Hoffman has become converted from his atheism to believe in Christ (he says he became Christ). He then decided to destroy the forgeries he created, because, as he explains, they were "blasphemous" (at least from a Catholic perspective). The real Hoffman never experienced such a conversion and ended up killing some people with bombs in an attempt to cover up the fact that the documents he sold to the Church were forgeries.

H. Clayton Earls
Trying Times. Vantage Press (1989)

"Time-travel sf novel which includes a Utah doctor who discovers a cure for cancer in 1859."

Greg Egan
"Mitochondrial Eve" (first published in Interzone #92, 1995. Available at:

I turned to Lena. "You know the Mormons baptised her posthumously, last year?"

She shrugged the appropriation off lightly. "Who cares? This Eve belongs to everyone, equally. Every culture, every religion, every philosophy. Anyone can claim her as their own; it doesn't diminish her at all." She regarded the bust admiringly, almost reverently.

Terry England
Rewind. New York: Avon Books (1997)

One of the "Group of Seventeen" -- adult humans regressed by an alien race to childhood -- is a Latter-day Saint. There are a few pages devoted to her reaction, her family's reaction, and the reaction of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Unfortunately, the author seems staggeringly ignorant of Latter-day Saint culture and belief. The terminology is wildly inaccurate and the reactions are incomprehensible. This mostly commendable and interesting novel is also diminished by surprisingly negative stereotypes of other minorities (blacks, Evangelicals, etc.). Even most of the scientists are poorly characterized -- they seem like Jerry Springer rejects rather real scientists.

Philip Jose Farmer
"Riders of the Purple Wage" in The Hugo Winners: Volumes One and Two. (Isaac Asimov, ed.) Garden City, NY: Nelson Doubleday (1971; story copyright 1967)

[The title of this story is a play on words based on the title of the classic Zane Grey novel Riders of the Purple Sage, which is largely about Latter-day Saint pioneers.]

Philip Jose Farmer
Dayworld Rebel. New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons (1987)

Pg. 53:

"I started out as a... Catholic priest. Then it occurred to me that Catholic meant universal. But was I truly universal? Was I not actually limited, confined by one church, which was not really universal? Was I not rejecting other religions, all of which and every one of which God must have founded, put on Earth through the minds of their founders? Would they exist if the Great Spirit regarded them as false? No, they would not. Therefore, proceeding both on divine revelation and logic, which have never before had anything to do with each other, I became the first truly universal, therefore catholic, priest.

"But I did not found a new eclectic religion. I have no ambition to compete with Moses, Jesus, Mohammed, Buddha, Smith, Hubbard, etcetera. There is no competition... I am elected and entitled to practice any and all religions and to serve God, humbly or proudly, as the case requires..."

Philip Jose Farmer
To Your Scattered Bodies Go. New York: Berkeley Medallion Books (1971). [1972 Hugo Award]

Pg. 73:

"You are a blasphemer, Mr. [Richard Francis] Burton. I read about you in the newspapers, and I read some of your books about Africa and India and that one about the Mormons in the States. I also heard stories, most of which I do not believe, they made you out to be so wicked. Reginald was very indignant when he read your Kasidah..."

Tom Flynn
Galactic Rapture. New York: Prometheus Books (2000)

Tom Flynn, the author, is the co-founder of the Secular Humanist Bulletin and the author of the nonfiction book The Trouble with Christmas.

Excerpt from a description of the book ( She's not the only one. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints has been fairly dormant for a long while, but entrepreneurial evangelist Alrue Latier recognizes in Parekism a chance to revitalize Mormonism with himself at the helm -- and, more pertinently, how this situation can be manipulated such as to increase yet further the torrent of monetary "offerings" sent in to his own near-perpetual senso show by the credulous.

Flynn wrote about his novel: ( All is well until a celebrated Catholic mathematician calculates where God will send his son next... Enter the studios of the scheming Mormon televangelist who hungers to follow Rome out into the Galaxy... GALACTIC RAPTURE is his first novel. If it triggers the first Mormon fatwa (as some expect), it may be his last.

From the publisher's website ( Now called "Terra," Earth has two lucrative exports: a perversely engaging mass entertainment medium known as "senso" and Earth religions, of which the jaded Galactics can't get enough... This novel is an iconoclastic, darkly hilarious epic, packed with hypocritical cardinals, scheming Mormons, religious bunco artists, and cynical media manipulators.

Tom Flynn
Nothing Sacred. New York: Prometheus Books (2004)

The author describes this sequel "as negative toward Mormonism as its predecessor Galactic Rapure..."

A review on the publisher's website ( states:

If Harlan Ellison, Tom Clancy, James Morrow, and Friedrich Nietzsche co-wrote a novel, they might produce Nothing Sacred... [which] takes place in a galaxy-wide future civilization that's obsessed with religion, yet furious at Terra (Earth) for giving rise to the most popular creeds of all. Terra may be the planet where humanity originated, but sophisticated Galactics treat it like a dismal stepchild. Few Terrans seek their fortunes among the stars. Those who try face patronizing discrimination. Into this galactic crucible leaps Earth-boy Gram Enoda... Enoda just wants to get rich. Instead he stumbles into the center of a top-secret, half-baked plan to (yes, literally) save the galaxy... complex plotting, searing black humor... and penetrating examination of religious and philosophical issues... Readers intrigued by humanism, atheism, philosophy of mind, libertarianism, Mormon history, or the anthropic principle will find their obsessions reflected...
The "About Atheism" website (at says of this book:
There isn't a lot of "atheist" or "skeptical" fiction out there, but Tom Flynn has now produced two such works. First was Galactic Rapture, a science fiction novel that addresses the perils of religion. Now there is Nothing Sacred, another science fiction novel where Earth is a backwater that no one else in the universe particularly likes - largely because of the religions that got their start here. So what's young man seeking his fortune among the stars supposed to do?

Alan Dean Foster
To the Vanishing Point. New York: Warner Books (1988)

A large part, more than half, of this novel takes place in one or possibly two alternative dimensions, in the state of Utah. Major sections take place in Cedar City and Salt Lake City, Utah. Pg. 189-190:

The city itself [Salt Lake City] lay in ruins. Jagged stumps of tall buildings protruded like broken teeth from what had once been the center of town. A caved-in square marked the location of the great Mormon temple. Not a single structure remained intact. There were only echoes, shadows of what had once been thriving suburbs and commercial districts. Nothing moved on the roads leading in and out of the city. Whole blocks had been flattened, the ground scoured to the foundations as if by a giant abrasive. In places the earth itself had been ripped away in long gouges.

Where it entered the city the interstate was broken and shattered. He took the first crumbling off ramp. As they descended, the concrete broke from beneath the rear right tires, but their momentum carried them safely the rest of the way to the surface of a city street.

Vince Gilligan
"Roadrunners". Directed by Rod Hardy. 5th episode of the 8th season of the "X-Files" TV series. (First aired 27 November 2000)

This episode has less to do with Latter-day Saints than season seven's "Hollywood A.D." and "Fight Club," but it is notable that it takes place entirely in Juab County, Utah. Investigating a murder, Scully finds herself trapped in a small rural town not on any map. The townspeople all belong to a weird Christian fundamentalist group that has moved from Texas through New Mexico, Arizona and other southwestern states prior to coming to an out-of-the way place in Utah. Various linguistic and other clues indicate that they are not Mormons, but Utah was chosen to heighten the story's sense of otherworldliness. No characters are identified as Latter-day Saints, but the last scene takes place in Brigham Young University's new medical center.

William Gibson
Virtual Light. New York: Bantam (1993)

Pg. 219-221:

"Coffee?" Rydell asked hopefully...

...The fat man came back with a couple of big rough mugs of steaming tea on a little tray. "Yours is green," he said to Chevette Washington, "and yours is Mormon,' he said to Rydell, "because you did ask for coffee . . ."

"Um, thanks," Rydell said, taking the mug he was offered.

"Now you two take plenty of time," the fat man said, "and you want anything, just call." He went out, tray tucked under his arm, and closed the door behind him.

"Mormon?" Rydell sniffed at the tea. It didn't smell much of anything.

"Aren't supposed to drink coffee. That kind of tea's got ephedrine in it."

"Got drugs in it?"

"It's made from a plant with something that'll keep you awake. Like coffee."

Rydell decided it was too hot to drink now anyway. Put it down on the floor beside the couch... Maybe there really was something in the fat man's Mormon tea...

Also, Utah is mentioned on pg. 323 as the place where criminals from a racist Evangelical/Christian Identity sect have been captured and imprisoned.
Christie Golden
Invasion America (Penguin/Roc Books: 1998)

This entire novel, based on the animated television series from DreamWorks, takes place in Utah. About a half-human heir to an alien throne.

Christie Golden
Invasion America: On the Run (Penguin/Roc Books: 1998)

This entire novel, based on the animated television series from DreamWorks, takes place in Utah, with many scenes in Salt Lake City.

Ken Grimwood
Replay. New York: Arbor House (1986)

[A reference to Jake Garn, the Latter-day Saint senator from Utah who was also a test pilot and who rode on the space shuttle in 1985.] Pg. 288:

"...On the national front, we've got the shuttle going up this morning, and--"

"Which one?" Jeff rasped out.

"What?" Gene asked, puzzled.

"Which shuttle?"

"Discovery. You know, the one with the senator on board."

Pg. 258:
But that week, his former father-in-law had seized on a single topic, wouldn't let it go: the just-aborted voyage of Thor Heyerdahl and the Norseman's quixotic attempts to prove that early explorers, sailing on papyrus-reed boats, could have brought Egyptian culture to the Americas more than three thousand years before Columbus.
[More, pg. 260-261]
Elizabeth Hand
Waking the Moon. New York: HarperPrism (1995)
Approx. year of story: 1995

Pg. 203:

Random images flickered across the screen: Bugs Bunny, "Bonanza," soaps, "Reading Rainbow," vintage PeeWee, Windex, the Stephen King Network, what looked like a live broadcast of an assassination attempt but turned out to be the new Slush video, Pepsi, Astroboy, Hoji Fries. It was impossible to tell what you were supposed to buy and what you were supposed to actually watch--Brando, Datsun, IBM--Jack made another rude sound--Donahue, McDonald's, "Mormon Matters," Sally, Oprah, Geraldo, Angelica...

[Reference to Sundance, Utah.] Page 265:

"See, originally I thought I had this summer fellowship at Sundance, but when that fell through..."

Trent Harris
"Plan 10 from Outer Space" (1994). Written and directed by Trent Harris. Starring Patrick Michael Collins, Karen Black (as Nehor) and Stefene Russell.

Comedy. A woman accidentally discovers the Plaque of Kolob which leads her to discover an insidious alien plot for world domination documented by an early Mormon prophet. Set in Salt Lake City. Contains a wealth of "inside" humor regarding Utah and Mormon culture. [Review.]

Keith Hartman
The Gumshoe, the Witch and the Virtual Corpse Meisha Merlin (1999)

From a Denver Post book review: "In a future Atlanta, religion has subdivided the community. Baptists, Mormons, pagans and others all have their own communities reinforced by their own schools." The story features a gay detective. His search for his missing police partner (who happens to be a witch) leads to a Christian music star, a cross-dressing Cherokee shaman and a powerful Baptist senator.

Keith Hartman
"Sex, Guns and Baptists" in Bending the Landscape: Science Fiction. (Nicola Griffith and Stephen Pagel, editors). Overlook Press (1998)

Pg. 14:

"Or Methodists. Or Mormons. Or Presbyterians..."

Glenn Hauman
"On the Air" in The Ultimate X-Men (edited by Stan Lee). New York: Boulevard Books (1996)

Pg. 159:

Finckley: Certainly that can't be the only reason you went public.
Worthington: No, it wasn't. A big reason was to bring home the fact that anybody can be a mutant, that it cuts across race and class. Even the bluebloods can have a mutant baby. It's not a "...only Haitians, only poor white trash, only Jews, only blacks" sort of thing.
Finckley: Was that a big problem?
Worthington: Yes, it was and is. I found out that one of my oldest prep school friends, Cameron Hodge, a man I trusted with my finances and my life, hated mutants with a passion. He tried to destroy me and my friends numerous times... later by joining and leading a rabid anti-mutant group.
Finckley: Why would a man like that--from your comments, a man with the most pedigree of backgrounds--behave that way?
Worthington: I don't want to speculate on him in particular, but why does anybody do that who should know better? With some people if it's not the mutants, it's the moneylenders, it's the Masons, it's the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.

Robert Heinlein
Stranger in a Strange Land. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons (1961). [1962 Hugo Award]

Pg. 290:

She came back to their flat one day to find him doing nothing, surrounded by books--many books: The Talmud, the Kama-Sutra, Bibles in several versions, the Book of the Dead, the Book of Mormon, Patty's precious copy of the New Revelation, various Apocrypha, the Koran, the unabridged Golden Bough, the Way, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, sacred writings of a dozen other religions major and minor...
[Listing early participants in Mike Smith's new Church of All Worlds, one Mormon family is mentioned, but it is a family from a schismatic group, not from the mainstream Church.] Pg. 316:
"...two Fosterites... one circumcised Jew and his wife and four children... One Catholic couple with a little boy... One Mormon family of the new schism--that's three more, and their kids. The rest are Protestant and one atheist...
Pg. 348:
Bishop Oxtongue, at the New Grand Avenue Temple, preached on the text (Matt. XXIV:24): "For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect." He made clear that his diatribe did not refer to Mormons, Christian Scientists, Roman Catholics... nor to any fellow travelers whose good words counted more than inconsequential differences in creed or ritual... but solely to upstart heretics who were seducing faithful contributors away from the faiths of their fathers [i.e., the Church of All Worlds].

Robert Heinlein
Tunnel in the Sky.

Robert Heinlein
Citizen of the Galaxy. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons (1957)

A spaceship is named Joseph Smith after the founder of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Pg. 172 [Pg. 145 in Ballantine 1984 ed.]:

The Great Gathering was even more than Thorby had imagined. Mile after mile of ships... Thorby made note to get a berthing chart . . . Saturn, Chiang, Country Store, Joseph Smith, Aloha . . .

Robert Heinlein
Friday. New York: New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston (1982)

Page 321: To mask the sound of a conversation from eavesdropping microphones in his room, the main character plays music by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir (identified as the "Salt Lake City Choir"):

I dragged two chairs off into the corner farthest from the couch and out of line of sight for the Eye location he had indicated. I switched on the terminal, punched it for music, selected a tape featuring the Salt Lake City Choir. Perhaps an Ear could reach through and sort out our voices but I did not think so.

The United States has been balkanized, states and regions reverting to highly independent, autonomous states. Utah and surrounding area have become "Deseret" again. Page 141:
The International Corridor was closed. It was possible to reach Deseret by changing at Portland, but there was no guarantee that the SLC-Omaha-Gary tube would be open."

Robert Heinlein
Double Star (1956 Best Novel Hugo)

Toward the end of chapter 5

Robert Heinlein
"If This Goes On" in Revolt in 2100, New York: Baen (1989; story copyright 1940)

When this novel begins the United States is controlled by a religious dictatorship. That regime began when an Evangelical/Protestant preacher (whom the author compares to Huey Long) used his television station and Ku Klux Klan-like stormtrooper tactics to get himself elected president, after which his administration suspended democratic elections.

The protagonist of the novel starts out working for this Protestant theocracy, but decides to escape and ends up helping to overthrow it. To make his escape, he parachutes out of an airplane into Provo, Utah, where the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has been forcibly suppressed, but where the Latter-day Saint people are still against the dictatorship. Later, Latter-day Saints are one group (along with Catholics and dissident Protestants) who help overthrow the dictatorship.

Example, from near the end of Chapter 14:

The Mormon Battalions had their own togs, and they were all growing beards as well - they went into action singing the long-forbidden "Come, Come Ye Saints". Utah was one state we didn't have to worry about, now that the Saints had their beloved Temple back.

Robert Heinlein
"Starship Troopers": 1997 film directed by Paul Verhoeven, based on the popular Heinlein novel, which received the [1960 Hugo Award].

In this movie version there is a playful reference to Mormons: A short news story reports that the "Port Joe Smith" colony (founded by "Mormon extremists") has been destroyed by the enemy arachnid aliens.

Robert Heinlein
To Sail Beyond The Sunset

Statement about religious freedom in the U.S.

...of course it was always open season [on Jews Catholics and] Mormons

Robert Heinlein
Job: A Comedy of Justice. New York: Ballantine (1984)
Approx. year of story: 1984

Pg. 127:

Would I want to go back? Abigail was there--and, while polygamy was acceptable in the Old Testament, it was not accepted in the forty-six states. That had been settled once and for all when the Union Army's artillery had destroyed the temple of the antichrist in Salt Lake City and the Army had supervised the breaking up and diaspora of those immoral "families."

Giving up Margrethe for Abigail would be far too high a price to pay...

[Heinlein, through this novel's main character, here expresses his well established acceptance for polygamy, as well as his anger for the mistreatment of the early Mormons in Utah at the hands of the federal government.]

Also, pg. 232:

Suddenly... the ceiling lowered abruptly and changed to a beam-and-plaster construction, one wall became a picture window looking out at mountains that belonged in Utah (not Texas), the wall opposite it now carried a massive stone fireplace with a goodly fire crackling in it, the furniture changed to the style sometimes called 'mission' and the floor changed to flagstones covered with Amerindian rugs.

Zenna Henderson
Pilgrimage: The Book of the People. New York: Avon (1961)

[Henderson's borrowed heavily from her Latter-day Saint background and from what she saw in the predominantly Latter-day Saint communities in which she lived when writing the People stories. No references explicitly name the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, however.] Pg. 72

"How come? What's wrong with them?"

"Why, nothing, Mac, nothing. Matter of fact they're dern nice people. Trade here a lot. Come in to church and the dances."

"Dances?" I glanced around the steep sloping hills.

"Sure. We ain't as dead as we look," the attendant grinned. "Come Saturay night we're quite a town. Lots of ranches around these hills. Course, not much out Cougar Canyon way. That's where your friends live, didn't you say?... they just--feel different... Good different. Real nice different." He grinned again. "Wouldn't mind shining up to some of them gals myself. Don't get no encouragement, though."

Tracy Hickman
The Immortals. New York: ROC/Penguin Books (1997)

[This novel takes place in Utah, with many scenes in Beaver, Utah, which is described as being predominantly Mormon. The church leader (stake president) and the mayor are the same man, and most people there prefer church and state to be fairly intertwined. Most of the characters and issues in the book are not specifically Mormon, but some are.]

David Hine
Daredevil: Redemption #5 (June 2005), Marvel Entertainment Group: New York City, page 19; written by David Hine, illustrated by Michael Gaydos, cover by Bill Sienkiewicz; reprinted in Daredevil: Redemption trade paperback, Marvel Entertainment Group: New York City (2005).
Approx. year of story: 2005
MATT MURDOCK: There's a copy of the Holy Bible here too, the Book of Mormon, the Koran. Are you a follower of any of these religions?

JOEL FLOOD: Not really. I just like to study different beliefs. Take a little from here and there.

Details/images: Reference in Daredevil: Redemption #5 to The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ

Dean Ing
Systemic Shock. New York: Tor (original 1981; 1st Tor edition 1992)

[The novel details events leading up to a sudden alliance between Islamic, Indian, and Chinese nations, and the ensuing SinoInd nuclear war in which the United States is devastated. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints emerges from the war as the dominant power in North America, and the Latter-day Saint Secretary of State becomes president. Many major and minor characters are Latter-day Saints.]

Pg. 63:

Every good Mormon knew from the cradle that he was expected to maintain a year's supply of necessities for every family member against some unspecified calamity. Mormon temples maintained stocks of provisions. A year's supply of raw wheat was not expensive, and its consumption meant that one must be able to grind flour and bake bread. The drying of fruit, vegetables, and meat allowed storage at room temperature with no chemical additives more injurious than a bit of salt and sulfur.

Mormons had such a long Darwinian leg up on their gentile neighbors (to a Mormon, all unbelievers including Jews were gentiles) that, by the 1980's, the church found it wise to downplay the stored provisions. Faced with a general disaster, a Mormon might choose to share his stored wealth with an improvident gentile--but no longer advertised his foresight because he did not want that sharing at gunpoint.

Dean Ing
Single Combat. New York: Tor (1983)

[The novel is about a post-apocalyptic America in which Latter-day Saints are the dominant social power. A kind, respected Mormon president dies of cancer and his vice-president, another Mormon, turns out to be a despotic ruler.]

Pg. 12:

This was not to say that most Mormons, guided by their Council of Apostles, sought a repressive society. In a genuine ecumenical spirit, Latter-day Saint tithes helped defray the costs of some protestant sects and promoted open forums for debate. The church had even donated campaign contributions to some fence-straddling legislators of the Independent party, though Indys were similar to Democrats of the prewar era, many of them openly critical of this growing connection between the state and the church of the Latter-day Saints.

Dean Ing
Wild Country. New York: Tor (1985)

Pg. 11:

The post-war excesses of Young's people had driven Quantrill to rebellion... They drove so many good people to the rebel ranks that the elections of 2004 had cut across the lines of Mormonism and federalism. Now it was President Ora McCarty whose cabinet struggled to reconstruct America.
[Also, "Mormon fifty-buck pieces" are mentioned on pages 191 and 314-315 as a preferred hard currency. These were coins issued by when the U.S. government was under Latter-day Saint leadership. The coins were then by Navajos into a prized coin.]
Catherine Jinks
Rapture. Pan Australia (2001)

Plot description: Early in the 21st century, Joseph Peek turned into another person. Now, eighty years later, journalism student Aldo Frewin discovers who that person was - and why he's now living as Jarom Woodruff, aged sixteen, in a troubled Mormon splinter group in remote Tasmania.

For members of this group, the End of the World is imminent and the Rapture awaits. For Aldo and his uncle, time is also running out. They need to know - will Jarom die as Joseph died before they uncover the truth? Has a genetic experiment changed the course of history? And if it did, does anyone have the power to change the future?

John Kessel
"The Pure Product" in Modern Classics of Science Fiction (edited by Gardner Dozois). St. Martin's Press, New York (1991)

Pg. 557:

I arrived in Kansas City at one o'clock on the afternoon of the thirteenth of August. A Tuesday. I was driving the beige 1983 Chevrolet Citation that I had stolen two days earlier in Pocatello, Idaho. The Kansas plates on the car I'd taken from a different car in a parking lot in Salt Lake City. Salt Lake City was founded by the Mormons, whose God tells them that in the future Jesus Christ will come again.

John Kessel
Good News from Outer Space. New York: Tor (1990; c. 1989)

[Reference to Latter-day Saint baseball player Dale Murphy, who served as a mission president after he retired from baseball.] Pg. 84:

He was wearing his high school baseball uniform. His spikes and glove--a Dale Murphy autograph--rested on the broken yellow vinyl of the only other kitchen chair.

Stephen King
The Stand. Garden City, NY: Doubleday (1978)

[A large segment of this novel takes place in Utah, and the state is mentioned frequently, especially between pages 750 and 800. During one extended segment the main characters take refuge in the Hotel Utah (owned by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints). Also, the famous Latter-day Saint performing family the Osmonds are mentioned on page 224.

Because this is one of King's most popular novels, it was made into a TV miniseries, which was filmed in Utah, especially in Utah County.]

Stephen King
The Regulators (written as Richard Bachman). New York: Penguin Books (1996)

[Reference to the Mormon Tabernacle Choir on pg. 64.]

Stephen King
Bag of Bones. New York: Scribner (1998)

Pg. 422:

She turned to Rommie and George, who were standing side-by-side and looking like fellows who might want to explain all about the Mormon Church.

Stephen King
Hearts in Atlantis. New York: Scribner (1999)

Associated Press, 13 March 2000: '50s Singer Battles King Book:

SPARTANBURG, S.C. (AP) - More than 40 years after his first brush with fame, Joe Bennett's not sure he wants this one.

In Stephen King's latest book, "Hearts in Atlantis," the author includes lyrics from the 1957 song "Black Slacks" by Bennett's group, the Sparkletones.

But Bennett, a devout member of the... Church [of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints], objects to what he says is King's explicit and offensive language in the book.

"I don't want to seem pious, but this is absolutely not endorsed by me," he said. "That's the bottom line. This is just shock stuff."

The song helped the group earn two slots on the Ed Sullivan Show and was recorded by Simon & Garfunkel. The rights are owned by MCA, which got $10,000 from King last year to use it.

Bennett didn't know the song was in the book until he got a royalty statement last month. He asked King in a letter not to use it again, "but if he wants to, we don't have any legal ground to stand on."

Damon Knight
A For Anything. New York: Tor (1990; 1959)

[Physicist from L.A. refers to the Los Angeles Temple, as an example of a very large structure.] Pg. 17:

"...With the Gismo, you can have ten or a million. Now what about fuel--all those big tanks that used to kill us dead before we got off the ground? Davey, two little tanks, hydrazine and oxygen, and two Gismos. We make our fuel as we need it. Forget about your... mass-energy ratios! I can take jack up the... Mormon Temple and take it to the Moon!..."

Damon Knight
Why Do Birds. New York: Tor (1992)

Pg. 211:

"Aren't you multiplying entities?" asked Dr. Coleman.

"No, because we're trying to account for real phenomenon. The effects would be masked by things we already know about--indoctrination, peer pressure, and so on--but these substances, if they exist, would account for a good many rather puzzling things. Ninety-nine point something percent of Mormons who grow up in Mormon communities and go to Mormon colleges remain Mormons. The apostasy rate for Catholics is higher, because they often go to secular colleges, and the rate for Protestants is higher still."

Dean Koontz
Dark Rivers of the Heart

M.S.: The villain, a corrupt Deputy Attorney-General plotting to subvert the Constitution, is furious when he learns that the hero has gone to ground in Utah, because he knows that those "Mormon straight arrows" will never fall in with his schemes. Many references. Example from pg. 394-5:

Mormons, Mormons were everywhere... and all of them too efficient and by-the-book either to flub their investigation or to let this whole mess be covered over with a wink and a slap on the back.... asking their oh-so-polite questions... and Roy could never be sure that they were buying any part of his cover story or that they were convinced by his impeccable credentials...

He was certain that not all the cops were Mormons... But the non-Mormons were indistinguishable from the Mormons because they'd adopted Mormon ways, manners and mannerisms... One of the officers was a black man named Hargrave, and Roy was positive that he'd found at least one cop to whom the teachings of Brigham Young meant no more than those of... the Hindu Mother-Goddess, but Hargrave proved to be perhaps the most Mormon of all Mormons who had ever walked the Mormon way. Hargrave had a wallet full of pictures of his wife and nine children, including two sons who were currently on religious missions in squalid corners of Brazil and Tonga

Eventually the situation spooked Roy as much as it frustrated him. He felt as if he were in The Invasion Of The Body-Snatchers

Michael Kube-McDowell
The Quiet Pools. New York: Ace Books (1990)

The reference to a Mormon missionary is slightly negative, but the reference to Mormon pioneers and contemporary Utah is positive. Pg. 35-36: was never really quiet at the Dallas-Fort Worth transplex. Not with the confluence of the third busiest airport I the world, the ninth busiest spaceport... Christopher was accosted four times--by a Mormon revivalist, by two canvassers for the Greens [an environmentalist group], and twice by joybirds working N Corridor's bed-box hotel.

Pg. 157, referring to Mormon pioneers:
"I trust Colorado'll still be there when I get to it."

"It's changing, now that people can fly in so easily." William said. "There are five times as many people in southeast Utah as there were thirty years ago. And they're leaving their mark as surely as wind and water. Patches of irrigated green, self-contained houses on top of mesas, little communities in the river valleys."

"I'll settle for almost virgin."

"It made me thing about the white pioneers on horseback, in wagons, on foot," his father went on, "reaching Denver and seeing that wall of mountains. That anyone went farther west is a complete defiance of sanity. It's astonishing to me that those lands were ever crossed, much less colonized. They've never been tamed."

"Have you ever been to Denver? I'd have kept going, too," Christopher said.

It was said lightly, a casual joke, but his father shook his head dismissively. "Crowding doesn't explain it. Not the first wave..."

Ursula K. Le Guin
The Lathe of Heaven. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons (1971)

Pg. 78:

Curious, in this life they hadn't had a trial marriage, he and Donna. There was no such thing, legally speaking, in the post-Plague years. There was full marriage only. In Utah, since the birth rate was still lower than the death rate, they were even trying to reinstitute polygamous marriage, for religious and patriotic reasons.

Stephen Leigh
"Strings" in Wild Cards (George R. R. Martin, ed.) New York: Bantam (1986)

Morris. K. Udall - an LDS congressman from Arizona. Pg. 360:

All of the Democratic candidates made an appearance near the stricken area, to be photographed with concerned, stern expressions as they gazed at the burnt-out shell of a building or spoke with a not-too-misshapen joker. Kennedy, Carter, Udall, Jackson--they all made certain they were seen and then took their limos back to the Garden [Madison Square Garden], where the delegates had cast two inconclusive rounds of votes for the candidacy.

Brad Linaweaver and Dafydd ab Hugh
Hell on Earth

The two soldiers who were the heroes in the first book in this series land in Utah and spend considerable time in Salt Lake City. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints plays a lead role in Earth's resistance movement against alien invaders. Two of the four main characters are Latter-day Saints: Albert, a Marine, and Jill, a 14-year-old computer hacker. Arlene, a third main characters, had a brother who was a Latter-day Saint. This is the second in series of four "DOOM" novels.

Scott Lobdell and Eliot S. Maggin
Generation X. New York: Berkley Boulevard (1997)

Latter-day Saint science fiction author Orson Scott Card is mentioned prominently. Pg. 161:

It got to be evening very quickly in Harvard Square. There was an old parking garage on John F. Kennedy Street around the corner that some enterprising developers bought and converted into a shopping mall called, aptly enough, the Garage Mall. In a science fiction bookstore in the Garage called Pandemonium, Angelo bought Amanda a book.

"I love this guy," she said, pointing at a short story collection by Orson Scott Card, so he bought her the book. Looking at the table of contents, she pointed to "Unaccompanied Sonata." "I never read this short story before. It must be new."

"No it's not," Everett looked over LaWanda's shoulder. "It's pretty old. It's a great story."

This prompted a lengthy discussion of the relative merits of Card as they walked out onto JFK Street and headed back toward Harvard Square. As Angelo and Everett went back and forth as to what, exactly, the story was about (Angelo thought politics, Everett thought music)...

[Also, the characters discuss the Latter-day Saint senator Jake Garn (because he flew on the space shuttle), on pages 157 to 158.]
Jack London
The Star Rover (1914). Chapters 12 and 13.

[Recalling his past lives (London is said to have believed in reincarnation at this time in his life), the main character visits a few historical events, including the Mountain Meadows Massacre.] Sample passage:

"I'll shoot you full of lead, you damned Mormon!... Damned Mormon!" was all I could sob at him. "Damned Mormon! Damned Mormon! Damned Mormon!"
Elsewhere (quoted in The Viper on the Hearth):
"They ain't whites...They're Mormons."

George Lucas
"Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade" (1989 film). Directed by Steven Spielberg. Starring Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones and Sean Connery as Prof. Henry Jones.

The first part of this movie take place in southern Utah, with a teenaged Indiana Jones participating in a Boy Scout outing, encountering men he thinks are grave robbers, and fleeing from them to the small Mormon town (apparently Moab) where he and his father are living at the time. There is no indication in this movie that the Indiana Jones character, or his father, are practicing Mormons.

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