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  1. Young Women's
  2. Youth Conference
  3. Saturday's Warrior
  4. Brigham Young University
  5. Polygamist
  6. Temple Wedding
  7. Orem High
  8. Bordeaux Mission
  9. Exmo Conference

Mormon Superstar's review continued

The plots and characters may be where Exmormon shines but the source of that shine came from C.L. Hanson's keen ability to portray and dictate the relatively small world of Mormonism -- the Mormon culture. This setting creates that "sexual tension," where characters attempt to avoid sins but also discover what makes them happy. Inevitably their desires for righteousness and self-discovery cross paths, which leads to a source of inner conflict.

The setting has provided a place of depth and substance for each character to grow into their own. Whether it was an awkward youth dance or BYU the reader is truly able to see the world both from within and without of the characters' points of view whether they struggle to find a cute boy or are coming to terms with their homosexuality.

Overall, the book was quite enjoyable -- the characters were interesting and the setting well developed. Hanson's simple style and excellent storytelling abilities is a perfect match for a Mormon coming-of-age story. Exmormon is full of joyful realizations, funny Mormon quirks, and sad struggles. My View: Highly Recommended

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By the same author: Foreign Stars

Tiny Pzipistan has a little of everything: Christians, Muslims, Jews, a thriving economy built on butternuts and opium, and a great stone wall for protection from neighboring Xiamstan. But a wall might not be enough if the king of Pzipistan manages to upset the delicate balance of power in unstable Xiamstan by drilling diagonally under the border to steal Xiamistan's oil.

Meanwhile, Noemie sees an opportunity to get one step closer to her dream of becoming a world-famous singer when a group of American music students arrive in Pzipistan to perform an American-Idol style reality show on international television. It's a crash course in globalization as the Americans learn that -- to the locals -- they're the ones who are the foreigners.

The musicians just want to establish a conservatory to study and perform the classical music of the region, but through their notoriety from their television performance (along with Noemie's eccentric family connections) they get pulled into a wry and romantic offbeat adventure to to prevent a civil war. Confusion and ambiguity abound as the young foreign stars aren't sure whether they're in danger and what is the right thing to do in an unfamiliar region plagued with serious problems that have neither simple causes nor obvious solutions.

This work is currently being illustrated as a graphic novel, and is projected for 2012. If you're interested in participating in this project, email me.

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