Friday, December 2, 2011

The Assassination of Governor Boggs

From the Back Cover:
Twenty-five years ago Governor Lilburn Boggs was shot at in his home, but the gunman was never found. Now Detective Calvin Pogue has been hired by the Boggs family to open the cold case. From one end of the country to the other Detective Pogue follows clues that lead him relentlessly to the legendary Mormon gunman Porter Rockwell - who still isn't making things easy for anyone! Join Detective Pogue as he steps into this hair raising mystery and tracks down Gov. Boggs’s enemies and friends to a finale you won’t believe.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It’s hard not to like a book about a character described on Wikipedia as “The Destroying Angel of Mormondom.”

Most of the book is written from the point of view Detective Pogue. Since this is LDS Historical Fiction, I expected it to have a fairly strong LDS bias. I was pleasantly surprised that most of the book didn’t. Detective Pogue is trying to decipher who attempted to assassinate Gov. Boggs. The anti-Mormon people he interviews, like John Bennett, speak quite ill about Mormons and their religion. At the same time, the LDS members that are interviewed in connection with the case describe the persecution they experienced at the hands of Gov. Boggs and the Missouri mobs.

Every now and then we get to read snippets from Porter Rockwell:
If ever I had inclinations toward the Christian ways of turnin’ the other cheek, they left me that day. I determined to find the means to get me some guns and learn how to use them. Them mobbin’ pukes would never get away with attackin’ my family. Never Again.

I was discussing this book with a friend at work. Once he heard that Porter Rockwell was a main character he became quite animated telling me what he knew about him. Ironically, that evening as I continued reading the book, I read in it, the exact things my friend told me about Porter. I appreciate when an author does their research and includes fact in their historical fiction.

The author, Rod Miller, does an excellent job of “changing voice” for each character. It is a difficult thing to do, i.e. create several different ways of speaking and thinking for each character when they’re coming out of one person’s (the author’s) head. Rod did it very skillfully. I highly recommend this book to anyone that likes either historical fiction or just a good mystery. You can buy the book HERE. This book will make a great Christmas gift. You might want to buy two copies though, because you’re going to want to read it too, and no one likes unwrapping a used book for Christmas.

FTC note: I did receive a free copy of the book so I could review it. However, that didn’t influence my write up.