Magnus Itland's Reviews > The Mission

The Mission by Shaun Messick
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's review
Jan 16, 2012

it was ok
Read from January 16 to 23, 2012 , read count: 1

Mormons. In space!
If you are one of the many who have met Mormon / Latter Day Saint missionaries trying to push their holy book on random people, you may have wondered: "What are they like off-duty?" This book will not answer that question. The author is still trying to push his religion in a cheerfully unsubtle way even as he is writing a science-fiction book. As such, the result is something highly unusual.

Unfortunately, it has little value beyond the absurd theater effect of combining quotes from LDS scriptures with spaceflight. The science is poorly developed and is kicked brutally aside whenever religious doctrine needs its place. The book reads like your average Mormon missionary having earnestly studied some handbook of novel writing. For instance the famous slogan "kill your darlings" is effectuated early in the book in the most literal ways, with the love interests of the main characters being killed off for unclear reasons. In the middle of the book there is some actual drama that is neither predictable nor completely random, and my hopes for the book started rising. "There is not going to be a real ending, though" I said to myself , and this also came to pass. It looks like the book ends at the end of the first chapter after some particular number of words or pages was reached. It is not really a book, but the first part of a book. There is no resolution, and the last chapter is no different from the rest except feeling a little rushed toward the end.

I don't think the barely mediocre writing has anything to do with the author's religion. It is actually one of the more charming traits. Most of us just can't write a good book. At least he will have a market as long as there are very few books about Mormons in space.

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