Editor's Introduction

Daniel C. Peterson

The first volume of this Review of Books on the Book of Mormon covered items published during a year in which the adult curriculum of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was devoted to the Book of Mormon. That fact yielded a bumper crop for review. But many of us frankly wondered whether there would be enough material to fill successive issues. Our fears have proved unjustified. With our second volume, nearly twice as bulky as the first and covering more than twice as many books, doubt about our ability to produce an annual collection of reviews vanished. The present volume, the third, is even longer. We begin to confront an embarras de richesses. Our great worry this year has actually been how long the Review can grow before it becomes physically unwieldy.

The most appropriate editorial role for me, then, seems to be to get out of the way of our reviewers. In any case, no divine afflatus has settled upon me, no hobbyhorse demands to be ridden; readers will thus be subjected to no long-winded introduction--this year, at least.

There remains, however, my obligation to thank some of those who have helped in the production of this volume of the Review: Andrew Teasdale's bibliography significantly enhances the publication's usefulness. James E. Faulconer, Dennis J. Packard, Stephen D. Ricks, Matthew Roper, John W. Welch, and the staff at the F.A.R.M.S. office have each been extraordinarily helpful. As in the previous two volumes, Shirley S. Ricks did most of the hard editorial work. Without her competent efficiency, this volume would remain (as so many other worthwhile projects do) mere scattered piles of paper on the desks, shelves, and floors of my offices.

As always, the reviews are arranged in alphabetical order, according to the last name of the book's author. Where more than one review is provided of a given book, these are arranged according to the last name of the reviewer. Again, no attempt has been made to harmonize the views of our writers. Alert readers will, in fact, note some points of minor disagreement. By the same token, where similar positions are taken by two or more authors--and there are, as it happens, one or two places where the resemblances extend even to verbal similarities--this should not be ascribed to collusion or to the editor's heavy hand. Finally, it must be clearly understood that the opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect those of the editor, nor of the Foundation for Ancient Research and Ancient Studies, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, or the employers of the respective review authors.