Wednesday, October 16, 2013

I Wish I'd Written This Book

The Complete Mystery of Matthew Alcott: Heritage of Secrets
by Michael Oborn

It was his editor who did the talking and, God bless her, she didn't mince words.
"We received a second-party offer to purchase your manuscript, Mr. Alcott. It's a kill fee and it's for a considerable amount of money."
"It's a direct buy-out, Sam," the attorney Vincent interjected.
"Yes," she said, turning to her secretary, Glenda something. "Do you have it?"
Glenda handed her boss an off-white envelope. Sam pushed it into the middle of the table in Matt's direction. It rested there, on the glass surface. Five pair of eyes focused on it like the last piece of chocolate. 
When Matthew Alcott finishes his honest and meticulously researched biography of Joseph Smith, some high-ranking officials in the Mormon Church offer him 2 million dollars to keep from publishing it.--Like I said, I wish I'd written this book. But it's lucky I didn't, because a chicken like me would have taken the money and run.

Not the case with journalist and researcher Matt Alcott, the fearless hero of Michael Oborn's exciting thriller, The Complete Mystery of Matthew Alcott: Heritage of Secrets. Recovering from both Mormonism and alcoholism, Matt escapes Salt Lake City and then Las Vegas to a tiny town in upstate New York where he gets sober, finds love, reclaims his writer's voice, and begins to live an authentic life. But when news of his lucrative book deal reaches Salt Lake City, he is immediately pulled back to Utah and the hell he worked so hard to leave behind.

As the story weaves back and forth in time, Oborn's writing is consistently as solid as the passage above, his dialogue witty and entertaining, and his characters engaging--from the self-important Mormon patriarchs, to the desert denizens scattered around Zion's periphery. For example, the sexy herpetologist "without tan lines," and the Salt Lake based bikers who call themselves "The Twelve Apostles."

My one tiny criticism is that some passages are a bit long on explanation. But then, I speak from the perspective of a former Mormon who is already too familiar with the author's subject. Readers who are not so fortunate as to have belonged to the "one and only true church" will probably welcome these bits of exposition. And nothing gets in the way of Oborn's fact paced, thrill-packed plot.

Ready for an adventure? Order it here.


  1. sounds like a good read. I would not have taken any amount of money from the church. I would have written another book about how they tried to buy it. Maybe the author already includes that in the story.

  2. You'll have to read to find out! :)

  3. I read it and now I get it. Fun read; I was puzzled by the 'under the temple' bit. A little far fetched, but then I could sense a bit of Hugh Nibley in there.

  4. ohhhhhhhh sounds like a good one.

  5. It is! So is False Prophet- if I do say so myself. :)