Even for the most ardent skeptic, it's hard not to be curious about the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Maybe you've seen the hit musical comedy The Book of Mormon. Maybe you've heard about Holocaust victims and deceased celebrities like Elvis being posthumously baptized in Mormon churches. Or maybe you've come across some other belief or facet of the Mormon faith and can't help but wonder whether the religion is actually as wild as it seems. Sure, the young Mormon missionaries who knock on your door with promises of a book that will change your life are happy to speak with you about their religion and provide their own answers. But if you accept their offer, you'll likely be heavily recruited, repeatedly contacted, pressured to become a church member, and perhaps even told you're going to be tortured in hell if you don't accept their claims. Enter The Nonbeliever's Guide to the Book of Mormon, which offers an easily accessible, entertaining introduction to Mormonism. For those with a curious but skeptical mind, it also provides a no-pressure, no-strings-attached way to learn about what's contained in Mormonism's sacred text, without the tedium of having to read the whole thing - or the risk of being pestered in this life (or the afterlife, for that matter).
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An Illustration of Absurdity
Yes. As a former Mormon, there's a lot of angst involved in trying to leave the religion. You get lots of judgement and embarrassment from Mormon friends and family, and it can really be depressing. Sometimes, you really need a good laugh. Something to make you remember some of the reasons you left, and something to lighten your mood when people try to make you feel bad for quitting the religion.
I was completely surprised by Chapter 21. Up until Chapter 21, everything had been a humorous poking and mocking of the silliness that is The Book of Mormon. I don't want to spoil the surprise, but it really was the gem of the entire book. To hear and MD suggest a medical reason for why Joseph Smith did the things he did was really fascinating, and not something I have ever heard suggested, before. I REALLY responded to that chapter!
The narrator was delightful. He had just the right tone, and his timing and delivery kept me chuckling the whole book long. He also did a pretty good job at pronouncing unique Mormon words correctly. I've listened to books before, where the narrator had not been coached properly on pronunciations, and it affected my enjoyment of those books. Rich Miller did great. I suspect this book will have most appeal to people who are former Mormons. So getting the pronunciation right is important for the insider audience.