New Mystery Thriller 'Land of the Saints' Draws From Mormon Church History, by Ginny Grimsley, Market Wire
Los Angeles attorney Robert P. DesJardins plumbed the history and mysteries of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for his newest novel, "Land of the Saints".
The folding of fact into fiction produced a Mormon-style "Davinci Code" -- so plausible, some readers might wonder where history ends and imagination takes wing.
"As with the LDS church, the book centers on the Golden Plates that church founder Joseph Smith said the angel Moroni gave him in 1830,"
DesJardins says. "Smith said he transcribed the ancient Sanskrit etched into the plates, and that became the Book of Mormon."
God told Joseph that he could not show the plates to anyone else, but he did allow eight witnesses to see them before they were returned them to the angel.
In "Land of the Saints," a cowboy-lawyer helping investigate three killings discovers the Golden Plates did not ascend to the cosmos with an angel. Instead, they're hidden away here on Earth and the church's secret, paramilitary enforcement arm, the Danites, is prepared to do anything to prevent their discovery.
"Jeff Wells, the main character, also learns why the plates are so protected," DesJardins says. "It's because they weren't written in Sanskrit, they were written in the ancient hieroglyphics of the Micmac Indians. And the plates aren't gold, they're copper.
"So, it seems, Joseph Smith wasn't entirely honest. And that revelation could devastate a religion with 14 million followers."
DesJardin's extensive research provides a factually based history of a religion that has dominated the news as first two, then one, men with deep Mormon roots campaigned for the GOP presidential nomination.
"The church has always been looked upon by mainstream America with some suspicion, if not outright anger," DesJardins says. "As with any religion, it's important to ask questions about church founders and their circumstances in order to appreciate the authenticity of their creed."
About Robert P. DesJardins
A successful Los Angeles lawyer for more than 35 years, DesJardins is now a lecturer, private judge and judge pro tempore for the California Superior Court - in addition to being a novelist. DesJardins is also the author of "The Mistral" and "A Darker Shade of Orange."