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Latter-Day Cipher: A Novel [Paperback]

By Latayne Scott (Author)
Our Price $ 11.89  
Retail Value $ 13.99  
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Item Number 279118  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   384
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.3" Width: 5.45" Height: 1.04"
Weight:   0.82 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Apr 1, 2009
Publisher   Moody Publishers
ISBN  0802456790  
EAN  9780802456793  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
When rebellious Utah socialite Kirsten Young is found murdered in Provo Canyon with strange markings carved into her flesh and a note written in a 19th Century code, questions arise about the old laws of the Mormon Church. Journalist Selonnah Zee is assigned the story--which quickly takes on a life of its own. Even before the first murder is solved several more victims appear, each one more mysterious than the last.

Publishers Description

When rebellious Utah socialite Kirsten Young is found murdered in Provo Canyon with strange markings carved into her flesh and a note written in a 19th Century code, questions arise about the old laws of the Mormon Church. Journalist Selonnah Zee is assigned the story, which quickly takes on a life of its own. Even before the first murder is solved, several more victims appear, each one more mysterious than the last. Meanwhile, Sedonnah is distracted by her mother's onset of Alzheimer's and her sudden attraction to the mysterious Salt Lake City police chief who is investigating the murder.
Adding to a slew of other distractions, Selonnah's cousin, Roger, has recently converted and is now a public spokesperson for the Mormon faith. But paradoxically, Roger's wife, Eliza, is struggling to hold onto the Mormon beliefs of her childhood. If something is really from God, she wonders, why does it need to be constantly revised? Could the murderer be asking the same questions? And most importantly, will they be able to stop him before he commits his biggest crime, taking out a Mormon landmark and dozens of sightseers?

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More About Latayne Scott

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! LATAYNE C. SCOTT was a faithful and happy Mormon for ten years, attending Brigham Young University on a writing scholarship and working as a staff member for two of BYUs weekly magazines. She is the author of 13 published books, including Latter-Day Cipher, The Mormon Mirage, Why We Left Mormonism and After Mormonism, What? She has also published articles, reviews and poems in secular magazines and in major Christian magazines. She is the recipient of Pepperdine Universitys Distinguished Christian Service Award for "creative Christian writing." She is a representational thinker and a full-time writer, living in New Mexico with her husband of 35 years, and has two married children. For more information, visit and

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
An Eye-Opener  Feb 27, 2010
Journalist Solonnah Zee is assigned to cover the murder of Kristen Young, a young Utah heiress. The murder is not a ordinary murder, but one with strange carvings on the body and a note written in the weird symbols of the Deseret Alphabet of the early Mormon Church. This alphabet was designed by Joseph Smith with the writing of' 'The Book of Mormon'. The crimes soon escalate with the mutilated body of a long dead prostitute, the death of a hunter, a nameless man, a homeless old lady and the kidnapping of three men from a nursing home. Messages written in the Deseret Alphabet were left at each crime scene.

Who is behind these crimes? Are these incidents occurring to embarrass the LDS (Latter Day Saints) Church? What ties these crimes to the recent bombings of the Masonic Temples in Salt Lake City, Utah? Publicity like this is the last thing the LDS Church needs and it will do almost anything to protect itself.

The author, an ex-Mormon, goes to great lengths to point out the differences between modern LDS doctrine, the Book of Mormon, and Joseph Smith and Brigham Young's Mormonism. She has first hand knowledge of workings of the Mormon Church, but it is clear she had never been a worker in the temple. The book can be very confusing and hard to understand as it is sometimes difficult for Christians to comprehend the acts and rites of the LSD members and their doctrines.

Fundamental and practicing Mormons will be offended by the book, no doubt. However, it is recommended for those considering joining the LDS Church or have questions or doubts about their faith. It is a true eye-opener.

This book was supplied as a review copy by the publisher.
Don't Miss This Book!  Jan 17, 2010
I rarely read Christian fiction, but I read this book twice! Don't miss this intriguing mystery by a first-time but sure-to-continue novelist. I don't know much about Mormonism and can't comment on that aspect of the book, but the suspense and creative writing was excellent.
Fantastic Read  Nov 4, 2009
I've spent my whole life living in Utah and know a bit about Mormon culture and wasn't sure I'd love this book. Suprise, suprise. The mystery was grand, but what pulled me in and kept me was the facinating information about the secrets of LDS life woven through. The respected it paid to those that believe or don't in the LDS doctrine was fantastic. Bravo!
Truth or Fiction?  Sep 13, 2009
I don't know much about Mormonism, or didn't, until I read both of Latayne Scott's books dealing with Mormonism. But I do know this author. She writes about subjects she believes in and has thoroughly researched. If she puts it down on paper you can take it to the bank. She has personal knowledge of Mormonism and did not leave that faith without a lot of soul and truth searching and prayer. From what I have read that she has written and my personal knowledge of the woman, her only reason for putting words on paper is to bring truth to her readers. This book may be a work of fiction but it is based solidly on a truth she only wants her readers to examine for themselves.
Morbid Exhibitionism  Sep 9, 2009
Masquerading as a common murder mystery set in Provo, Utah, Latayne Scott has written a deliberate piece of anti-Mormon propaganda. Under the guise of a fictional work of serial-killing horror, Scott proceeds to defame the Mormon faith, their followers and all doctrinal practices she currently disagrees with. A former Mormon herself with an obvious malcontent bias, Scott knowingly attempts an expose of the practices the church holds sacred. Thoroughly polemic, the work is designed to discredit and misrepresent a world-wide conservative religion.

When Scott originally joined this faith and was admitted to its most sacred venue--the temple--she promised before God and her peers to keep her temple experience completely private. In this book she effectively desecrates her word and her experience in a severely twisted manner. Surprisingly, Scott doesn't seem to find anything wrong or 'un-Christian-like' in breaking her vow to God and using it for financial and/or literary gain. In addition, the book falsely links the practice of polygamy and various other events and observances which the Mormon church does not currently practice and has officially denounced.

Assuredly, if one has mistakenly joined a cult and discovered any abuses being performed, i.e. any illegal activity and certainly any immoral impropriety it would be a community service and moral obligation to expose the fraudsters and alert the innocent. One would applaud Scott in such an instance. But, because the basic Mormon creed promotes honesty and fidelity to God and man, it doesn't appear Scott has any grounds on which to base this morbid bit of exhibitionism.

Ironically, the short bio of the author herself should give any discerning reader their first clue that something is amiss. The brief phrase, "after her conversion to Christianity" is the glaring red flag that Scott has something to prove and she isn't about to be objective or rational. The official name the Mormon church is registered as and prefers to be known by is, `The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints'. Sounds Christian to me. Reviews that tout the book as "sympathetic" and "compassionate" with "no Mormon bashing" are ludicrous at best when anyone of that faith would be horrified at Scott's false, cruel rendering of their beliefs and ceremonies.

Admittedly, Scott is a fine writer with an extensive background in journalism, symbolism, and religion. But, the all pervading question is why she chose not do something more productive with her talent rather than spend so much of it lashing back at the good people she once embraced? I must confess I felt disgust when reading the work, and not for the reasons Scott intended. She has skill but, hopefully the author will realize her mistaken views and work on something less slanderous in the future.

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