Tag Archives: book

Mitt, Mormons, and “the Moment”

As you have read elsewhere on this blog, Mormons have a peculiar brand of patriotism when it comes to the United States of America. While they are not the only Christian sect to believe that God favors America above all other nations, they take that belief literally. God brought about the founding of the United States specifically for the purpose of founding His church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. So says Mormon doctrine.

But it doesn’t end there. Mormons believe the future of their church and the future of the nation are inextricably intertwined in the Divine Plan; that one cannot succeed without the other. This belief is based largely on the so-called White Horse Prophecy attributed to Mormonism’s founding prophet, Joseph Smith, which says:

“…the time [will] come when the Constitution [will] hang as by a thread and at that time when it [is] thus in jeopardy, the elders of this Church [will] step forth and save it from destruction.”

(This prophecy is the basis for the political thriller By A Thread, in which a young Mormon missionary is convinced by this and other Mormon scriptures to embark upon a CIA mission that leads him into a conspiratorial underworld that does indeed threaten the Constitution.)

As the 2012 presidential election nears, Mormons who believe that the prophesied moment has come in the person of Mitt Romney, are urging each other to help fulfill the prophecy. The following is just one example of the messages, posts, and emails that are circulating among the LDS faithful:

We were contacted today and asked to participate in a fast on Sunday for Mitt Romney and asked to enlist others to do the same.  That’s what this email is about. It is specifically to pray for him to have the Spirit with him during all the debates, but especially this first one.

Some suggestions of what to pray for are that he may have clarity of mind, recall of information, strength of convictions and present himself as strong and confident.  You’ve no doubt heard it said that this is the most important election in many years.  We are not only electing a President, but defining the future of the United States of America by the choices that we make.  If we live righteously, the Lord will continue to bless this covenant land as He has promised.

If you feel that this is something that you would like to be a part of, wonderful.  If you feel comfortable enlisting others to join in, even better!  As the Primary children will tell us on Sunday, we need to “Choose the Right.”

Update: The Huffington Post has since picked up this story. Read it here.

Will the prayers of the faithful be the key to Mitt Romney’s success? If he wins, will it be the fulfillment of prophesy long awaited by Mormons? Will he indeed “save” the Constitution? How might he do that? And from what would he be saving it?

More importantly, what will faithful Latter-day Saints think if Romney loses? Will they believe that they are at fault because they didn’t pray fervently enough? Will God’s plan be frustrated? Or will they attribute Romney’s loss to the candidate himself?

More than likely they will just conclude that the Moment is not yet, that they were mistaken in their belief that Mitt was the prophesied savior of the Constitution. And they will settle in and wait for the next White Horse candidate.

Reader Responses to By A Thread

“As Beaudet adds layer on layer to the story, it’s like a punch in the gut. I kept thinking, this could really happen.…’By a Thread’ has the ring of authenticity—It’s obvious that Beaudet has done his homework when it comes to Mormon customs and culture, to the finer points of our Constitution, in the descriptions of exotic locales such as Vienna and Munich. Most importantly, he understands that love is transcendent.” [This is an excerpt. To read the full review, click here.]

Neil Badders, Minneapolis, MN*
7 November 2010

“Book was fabulous. Very clever method of weaving several interesting storylines into one suspenseful drama. It continued to keep my interest and never had a slow moment. Very enjoyable reading.”

Garth Gordon Hokanson, Sebastopol, CA
17 September 2010

“By a Thread…is is an exceedingly well-crafted novel with the proverbial ‘ordinary men doing extra-ordinary things.’ That’s one of its great strengths. …Beaudet has carefully woven a well-integrated, believable tale of deception, loyalties betrayed, and young love. … By a Thread has a cinematic quality which makes it an easy read, and I hope it’s read by someone who is in a position to make it into a movie.”

John Adrian, New York*
14 October 2010

I just finished this book—goosebumps all the way to the end! I never read during this time of year because I am sooo busy with the beginning of the school year, but I grabbed it up any time I had some extra minutes. I loved this book. It begins by building the characters, locations, and sets the mood. Before you know it, it grabs ahold of you and you can’t put it down. It’s surprisingly on point with current affairs and grips you with the possibilities of things swinging out of control politically. With a refreshing point of view and story line, it brings a new twist to fiction that I haven’t encountered before. It’s a must read! It has great flow, great imagery, and I love the romance! I can’t wait to recommend it to my friends. My only question is—when’s the next one coming out?!!!”

Katie Cawood, Eugene, OR
25 September 2010

“In a nutshell, I enjoyed By A Thread! It has an attention-grabbing plot that seems even more plausible given today’s political atmosphere and extreme agendas. The complex plot reminded me of some of John Grisham’s earlier books, although this book does not have as much information regarding the details of the conspiracy to over-take the United States government that I would have enjoyed. …I would have also enjoyed more descriptive detail about the characters and the setting. I like to be able to form a picture of the characters and locations in a book as well as the intricacies of the plot. That being said, I would definitely recommend this book to anyone. It is entertaining and well written.” [This is an excerpt. To read the full review, click here.]

Chris Allen, Martinez, CA *
25 September 2010

“Great book, fun to read. ‘By a Thread’ is a terrorist/political thriller which is well written and hard to put down once you begin reading it. Marty Beaudet displays a remarkable knowledge of his subjects, adding significantly to the depth of the story line. The reader comes away from the book better informed about the United States political system, Vienna and nature of the Mormon missionary system. My concern about a missionary as the main character was quickly put aside as the story developed and I identified with Elder Davis. I am highly recommending this book to my friends.”

Alan Blodgett, Portland, OR
26 September 2010

“What I was expecting was something along the lines of a Dan Brown or Tom Clancy political thriller. What I got was a story about a man struggling with his beliefs and sense of self. This might have seemed like a rather rude change-up, but I was pleasantly surprised that Kevin’s story took over and held my interest throughout. The suspected terrorist, Jassim, is portrayed in a way not often seen in…popular literature or media…. This is a refreshing [change] from the usual stereotypes. I could empathize with both characters, and their trials make the resolution quite satisfying. The political crisis was very real and one could imagine this happening in today’s national climate. …I look forward to seeing what Mr. Beaudet will give us next.” [This is an excerpt. To read the full review, click here.]

Doug Blakeslee, Portland, OR *
29 September 2010

“At a time when many Americans are voicing displeasure about elected officials,…Beaudet’s story of security agency conspiracies and government takeovers is especially timely and compelling. It also adds to the mix the occasional blurred line between politics and organized religions…. Well-written and suspenseful,…it’s definitely an engaging, page-turner of a read… four stars out of five.”

Bob Lind, Echo Magazine (Phoenix, AZ)
October 2010

“…an exceptional book, a labyrinth of situations and outcomes. It is like a Picasso painting, something entirely visible, but hidden by directions of view. …

“It is shocking. It is logical. It is terrifying. Our government is in jeopardy the moment we open the book; we are victims of a cunning sabotage. There are government-shaking plots afoot, myriad conspirators, numbing moral conundrums.

“…a very strong tale. Its strength is its intelligence, its boldness, its honesty…. ‘By A Thread’ is about a young man, a Mormon, and whether he should believe what he has been told, or should believe the opposing feelings within his own heart.” [This is an excerpt. To read the full review, click here.]

Joel Blaine Kirkpatrick, Durango, CO
7 December 2010

“Excellent read! As a rule I don’t choose political thrillers and admit that I probably wouldn’t have read this one if the author had not been a twitter friend. However, I’m glad I did read it even though it scares me to think that something like this story could happen. The book is very fast paced and holds your interest from the very first page, I highly recommend.”

Kaye Starley, via Goodreads.com
1 April 2011

“What a wonderfully fun book! Great (and complex) plot full of fun twists and turns, good character development, well researched. Well done! A thoroughly enjoyable read. (Although a bit scary how possible it all… seems….) Is a sequel in the works…?”

—David Wertheimer, (Guemes Island, WA)
13 December 2010

“A fun read and a great page-turner…perfect for the stormy season when you want a good book to lift you out of your winter doldrums. I fell in love with the characters. When do we get to see the movie?”

Paul Beaudet (Guemes Island, WA)
1 November 2010

“When I was a missionary in Rome, our mission president told us to be on the lookout for an orange van. Men had threatened to kidnap two missionaries and force them to confess to being CIA agents. I loved reading this novel, ‘By A Thread,’ where it turns out the myth is true. The book is well-researched. I felt as if I were really in Vienna and the surrounding areas. The plot is outrageous and yet still believable.…I loved the book and actually think it would make a pretty good movie, too. I expect good things from Marty Beaudet’s future novels.” [This is an excerpt. To read the full review, click here. ***SPOILER ALERT***]

J. Townsend, Seattle, WA
11 November 2010

* These reviews were solicited by the author, based on the reviewers’ background, experience, and reading habits. Other than being provided with a free review copy of By A Thread, these readers were not compensated for their opinions, nor directed in any way. The full reviews have been published elsewhere on this blog and have only been edited for grammatical clarity. All other reviews on this page are the spontaneous response of readers.

By A Thread: "Outrageous, yet believable" 5 stars

Over on Amazon.com, fellow author Johnny Townsend gives By A Thread five stars, and says:

“When I was a missionary in Rome, our mission president told us to be on the lookout for an orange van. Men had threatened to kidnap two missionaries and force them to confess to being CIA agents. I loved reading this novel, ‘By A Thread,’ where it turns out the myth is true. The book is well-researched. I felt as if I were really in Vienna and the surrounding areas. The plot is outrageous and yet still believable.…I loved the book and actually think it would make a pretty good movie, too. I expect good things from Marty Beaudet’s future novels.” [This is an excerpt. To read the full review, click here. ***SPOILER ALERT***]



 

 

 

By A Thread: A Thriller that delivers the thrills

A review of the political thriller, By A Thread, by Neil Badders

Could this happen? Terrorists take out the president and vice president of the United States. Meddling by cabinet members and manipulation of the Supreme Court result in the elevation of the Secretary of Defense to the presidency, bypassing the rightful successor, the Speaker of the House. Rioting and martial law ensue. Can the country be saved? Exactly who is the enemy?

In a well-honed, tension-filled 312 pages, author Marty Beaudet makes a case for vigilance. Not only does the scenario seem plausible, his work of fiction should stand as a cautionary tale of the fragility of our democracy, shout out a warning signal to all Americans that we should never take our rights for granted. As Beaudet adds layer on layer to the story, it’s like a punch in the gut. I kept thinking, this could really happen.

The key to uncovering the terrorist plot lies in the hands of naive Mormon Missionary, Kevin Davis, who is recruited by the CIA in Austria to befriend a Kuwaiti, Jassim al-Shammari. Al-Shammari may have the answers the CIA needs to protect an America under attack from the outside and from within. The coordinates of Kevin’s moral compass are tested as his friendship with and feelings for al-Shammari grow. Is Jassim devil or savior? Kevin’s realization that he might be falling in love is heartwarming and heartbreaking, his inner turmoil tangible and believable.

“By a Thread” has the ring of authenticity—It’s obvious that Beaudet has done his homework when it comes to Mormon customs and culture, to the finer points of our Constitution, in the descriptions of exotic locales such as Vienna and Munich. Most importantly, he understands that love is transcendent.

In a addition to being featured in the Broadway national touring companies of “The Phantom of the Opera”, “Evita, “Fiddler on the Roof, Mame, and “The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, Neil Badders is also a published playwright, and has been a political reporter and theater critic. He is currently working on his book, “Let’s Get This Show On The Road”.  His essays can be found in his blog, Dreams in a Drawer, on LiveJournal.com.

By Neil Badders

Could this happen? Terrorists take out the president and vice president of the United States. Meddling by cabinet members and manipulation of the Supreme Court result in the elevation of the Secretary of Defense to the presidency, bypassing the rightful successor, the Speaker of the House. Rioting and martial law ensue. Can the country be saved? Exactly who is the enemy?

In a well-honed, tension-filled 312 pages, author Marty Beaudet makes a case for vigilance. Not only does the scenario seem plausible, his work of fiction should stand as a cautionary tale of the fragility of our democracy, shout out a warning signal to all Americans that we should never take our rights for granted. As Beaudet adds layer on layer to the story, it’s like a punch in the gut. I kept thinking, this could really happen.

The key to uncovering the terrorist plot lies in the hands of naive Mormon Missionary, Kevin Davis, who is recruited by the CIA in Austria to befriend a Kuwaiti, Jassim al-Shammari. Al-Shammari may have the answers the CIA needs to protect an America under attack from the outside and from within. The coordinates of Kevin’s moral compass are tested as his friendship with and feelings for al-Shammari grow. Is Jassim devil or savior? Kevin’s realization that he might be falling in love is heartwarming and heartbreaking, his inner turmoil tangible and believable.

“By a Thread” has the ring of authenticity—It’s obvious that Beaudet has done his homework when it comes to Mormon customs and culture, to the finer points of our Constitution, in the descriptions of exotic locales such as Vienna and Munich. Most importantly, he understands that love is transcendent.

In a addition to being featured in the Broadway national touring companies of “The Phantom of the Opera”, “Evita, “Fiddler on the Roof, Mame, and “The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, Neil Badders is also a published playwright, and has been a political reporter and theater critic. He is currently working on his book, “Let’s Get This Show On The Road”.  His essays can be found in his blog, Dreams in a Drawer, on LiveJournal.com.

By A Thread: "I fell in love with the characters…"

OK. So he’s my second cousin, once removed. That had nothing to do with this review of my new political thriller, By A Thread!

“A fun read and a great page-turner…perfect for the stormy season when you want a good book to lift you out of your winter doldrums. I fell in love with the characters. When do we get to see the movie?”

Paul Beaudet (Guemes Island, WA)

(See more reviews at the By A Thread website.)

 

 

 

 

 

By A Thread: "Suspenseful, timely tale"

A review of By A Thread, posted on Amazon.com by
– Bob Lind, Echo Magazine

Kevin “Red” Davis is a young Mormon missionary on a two-year assignment in Vienna. Among the countless people he meets (and attempts to convert) is one he can’t forget: a mysterious, engaging Kuwaiti named Jassim, who seems to awaken in Kevin feelings he has long repressed. When his mission ends, Kevin is recruited by a government agent to continue his friendship with Jassim, whom they feel may have some information about a terrorist plot that resulted in the death of both the President and Vice President of the United States. Meanwhile, a long-planned political plot threatens to turn the US into a militia state, with martial law and hired mercenaries set to take control. A journalist with inside information about the plot searches for Kevin and Jassim to help, if it isn’t too late already.

At a time when many Americans are voicing displeasure about elected officials, as well as government domestic and foreign policies, Beaudet’s story of security agency conspiracies and government takeovers is especially timely and compelling. It also adds to the mix the occasional blurred line between politics and organized religions, carried to an extreme for effect. Well-written and suspenseful, though it adds confusion with frequent use of acronyms to refer to government agencies and policies, it’s definitely an engaging, page-turner of a read, which I give four stars out of five.

 

By A Thread: "great mystery-drama-romance novel"

James Kent, author of Ohana News, responds to By A Thread:

I admit that my opinion may be prejudiced by over 21 years of friendship with Marty Beaudet, but his novel, By A Thread, definitely stands on its own merits.

It was a page-turner for me. I started reading it Friday evening, and finished reading it Sunday afternoon.

I so enjoyed his attention to detail that makes his story very plausible, and a true fantasy for conspiracy theorists. I confess that I once feared something similar to this happening under the Bush Administration.

Having been an LDS missionary thirty years ago, it was especially easy [for me] to step into the mind of Elder Kevin Davis to see the world through his eyes.  This would be especially true for [anyone] who served full-time LDS missions in Austria.

His story begins like a patchwork quilt, with seemingly unrelated events eventually weaving into each other.

The book points out that, because of a few radical extremists, Muslims are discriminated against in The United States and Europe and become easy targets of exploitation.

And then there is the very beautiful story of strangers becoming friends which eventually blossoms into a romance.

I am afraid to say anything more that will spoil the plot of with great mystery-drama-romance novel.

For more info: http://bit.ly/dodgia

I admit that my opinion my be prejudiced by over 21 years of friendship with Marty Beaudet, but his novel, By A Thread definitely stands on its own merits.
It was a page turner for me. I started reading it Friday evening, and finished reading it Sunday afternoon.
I so enjoyed his attention to detail that makes his story very plausible, and a true fantasy for conspiracy theorists.
I confess that I once feared something similar to this happening under the Bush Administration.
Having been an LDS missionary thirty years ago, it was especially easy to step into the mind of Elder Kevin Davis to see the world through his eyes.  This would be especially true for any of you who served full time LDS missions in Austria.
His story begins like a patchwork quilt with seemingly unrelated events eventually weaving into each other.
The book points out that because of a few radical extremists Muslims are discriminated against in The United States and Europe and become easy targets of exploitation.
And then there is the very beautiful story of strangers becoming friends which eventually blossoms into a romance.
I am afraid to say anything more that will spoil the plot of with great mystery-drama-romance novel.