1/5/10

Why I Like LDS Fiction

I already tweeted this, but I think it bears repeating and elaborating. Over the weekend, I read a book that was chosen as the January read for a book club I'm in. (No, I'm not telling you the book club and no, you can't join. Start your own and maybe I'll join that one too. Or maybe I'll start the LDSP book club. . .)

Anyway, this was a national suspense. The author sells well. I was wary going in because I knew there'd be language and probably loose morals. I was right. Lots of language and a couple of pages I had to skip due to explicitness. I usually only give these books one chapter but it was chosen by a very close friend and I knew she'd ask me about it, so I read—or rather skimmed—the whole thing.

What a waste of my precious time!

First, it was completely predictable and LAME. There were none of the twists and turns that Stephanie Black is so good at.

The characterization was flat; no sassy and unique heroines like Josi Kilpack creates.

The plot was pretty straight forward—no loops and subplots like Betsy Brannon Green gives us.

We knew right up front who the good guys were, who the bad guys were, and pretty much how it was going to end. No red herrings like Gregg Luke throws in our path.

And unlike Traci Abramson, Lynn Gardner, Ronda Hinrichsen, Jennie Hansen, Tristi Pinkston, and most of the other LDS mystery/suspense writers, this woman kept me on edge—not in a good way—never knowing when I was going to have to skip a swear word or jump past a detailed sex scene. (Picture me shuddering over that.)

But the biggest outrage was when the hero says that he likes the heroine because she has morals—as proven by the fact that AFTER they were intimate (mere hours after they meet up), she is worried over the idea that he might be married or have a girlfriend.

ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!!?

Seriously.

So, a GREAT BIG THANK YOU to you LDS authors out there who write intriguing suspense without all the crud in it.

13 comments:

Jennie said...

Thanks, LDS Publisher for including me in that group of writers I consider the elite of mystery suspense writers, though there are a few others I would add. I've had the same disappointing experience when I've picked up highly reccommended mystery suspense novels by well-known general market writers, some of which have written great novels in the past, but seem to just be coasting on their names now.

Daron D. Fraley said...

AMEN!

Ronda Hinrichsen said...

Thank you for adding me in that group, too. But even more, thank you for speaking out! It's like the "world" has no idea what "morals" really are. Unless it's just the publishers who publish them? Hard to say, but again, thank you.

Charlie Moore said...

In my younger, not as committed to the gospel, years, I did read many authors whose words were suspect as far as morals and LDS standards dictate. Now I primarily read LDS authors (incidentally, I'm finding a wealth of new writers who are talented and who are providing new story lines or provocative twists on popular genres. One LDS author I'd like to mention is Sharon Lewis Koho. A Painting on the Pond and To Walk in His Mocassins are very good reads. Plus her brother lives in my ward.

My non-LDS addiction are Louis L'Amour westerns. Loving the old west, I reread these stories on a regular basis. Named my youngest son, with his mother's blessing, after my favorite Louis L'Amour character.

Regards,

Charlie

Tamara Hart Heiner said...

the world is a yucky place. It sure has a different idea about morals than we do.

Josi said...

Well, if this isn't good company to be in, I don't know what is. Thanks LDSP--you made my day.

Tristi said...

I got to be on the list! Holy cow, I'm on the list!!

Thanks for putting me on the list. I love the list. :)

But coming off my giddy high (at being on the list) there are so many ways to tell a story that don't have to revolve around loose morals. Sheesh, if you can't figure out how to tell one without, I think you're in a rut.

Rebecca Irvine said...

I so wholeheartedly agree. The only non-LDS author I am addicted to is Emilie Loring (but her books are very old school and she is no longer living).

Kate said...

I hate that anxious feeling wondering if I dare turn the page or would it be better to turn two.

Kate said...

Also, I have a hard time sympathizing with loose moraled (pretty sure that's not a word and I'll think of how to word this better at midnight) characters because I can't truly let go and feel the emotion of the book.

Rebecca Talley said...

Exactly why I read and write LDS fiction. I was reading a national, and very popular, author to broaden my horizons when 2/3 into the book I was slammed with an explicit scene. I stopped reading at that point and probably won't venture out into the "world" again for a while. There's plenty of amazing LDS authors to read (as your list proves--and, woo hoo for Tristi being on "the list").

Great post--I tweeted it.

Stephanie Black said...

I echo the others in saying it's a huge honor to find my name mentioned in your post! Thanks, LDSP!

Traci Hunter Abramson said...

What an honor to be mentioned in this post. Thank you LDSP!

And great comments by everyone. This reinforces why I so enjoy writing for this market. ;)