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Salamander: The Story of the Mormon Forgery Murders with a New Afterword

Salamander The Story of the Mormon Forgery Murders with a New Afterword Drawing from s of pages of police reports court documents interviews letters diaries Sillitoe s Roberts s narrative cuts thru the complexities of this famous crime investigation to deliver a g

  • Title: Salamander: The Story of the Mormon Forgery Murders with a New Afterword
  • Author: Allen D. Roberts Linda Sillitoe
  • ISBN: 9780941214872
  • Page: 316
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Drawing from 1000s of pages of police reports, court documents, interviews, letters diaries, Sillitoe s Roberts s narrative cuts thru the complexities of this famous crime investigation to deliver a gripping, Capote esque tale They embrace the details, then lay them out systematically as seen thru the eyes of the detectives, victims perpetrator The darkDrawing from 1000s of pages of police reports, court documents, interviews, letters diaries, Sillitoe s Roberts s narrative cuts thru the complexities of this famous crime investigation to deliver a gripping, Capote esque tale They embrace the details, then lay them out systematically as seen thru the eyes of the detectives, victims perpetrator The darkest secrets unravel gradually, allowing readers fleeting glimpses of the infamous salamander as it ducks in out of its fabricator s head What was the salamander letter why were so many people determined to possess conceal it Why was this one of the most unusual cases in American forensic history A skilled con artist by anyone s assessment, Mark Hofmann eluded exposure by police document authenticators the FBI, Library of Congress, the LDS church historical department polygraph experts until George Throckmorton discovered the tell tale microscopic alligatoring that was characteristic of the forgeries What ensued was a suspense ridden cat mouse game between seasoned prosecutors a clever, homicidal criminal In the end, this story verifies the saying that sometimes truth is stranger than fiction.

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      316 Allen D. Roberts Linda Sillitoe
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      Posted by:Allen D. Roberts Linda Sillitoe
      Published :2018-08-06T19:06:35+00:00

    1 thought on “Salamander: The Story of the Mormon Forgery Murders with a New Afterword

    1. Incredibly detailed account of Mark Hofman murders that took place in Salt Lake City in the mid 1980s. I appreciated the details about LDS church leaders like Hinckley and Pinnock who purchased forgeries from Hofmann or helped line up massive loans for Hofmann. I also found the forensic details around the old paper and ink fascinating. My only complaint with the book is the legal details bog things down near the end of the book and the back and forth (starting with the murders, then providing de [...]

    2. I wish I had remembered to review this a month ago when it was fresh in my mind. This was an excellent true life crime book and very fair to all involved. I could hardly put it down. I loved learning about how the detectives figured out that almost everything Mark Hoffman ever sold was a forgery and a fraud how through the most meticulous work and effort, they rose above the high intellectualism and skill of experts who had authenticated hundreds of items and had not the slightest doubt of their [...]

    3. What an astonishingly gripping tale of a true crime. This book was simply impressive on a number of fronts. First of all, the depth of the research that went into the making of this book is simply staggering. Secondly, I commend the authors for writing nonfiction which unfolded like fiction. Looking back, the Hofmann affair seems too unlikely to be true. Even so, the writing style of Sillitoe and Roberts brought more than a measure of reality to the story. Thirdly, I appreciated the way in which [...]

    4. Super interesting non-fiction read about the forgeries and bombings that occurred in the 80's. This book honestly read more like a Dan Brown book than a historical account. The authors weren't LDS, but I felt that it was a pretty unbiased telling, which I appreciated. This is a great historical read.

    5. Not as rivetingly written as "The Mormon Murders", but still fascinating, and in many ways more detailed in its account of the Hoffman forgeries and murders.

    6. A non-fiction I stumbled on by reading Charlie Lovett's Bookman's Tale. In that book, which deals with a forged historical document one of the characters refers to Salamander: the Story of the Mormon Forgery Murders. I just HAD to get itd it was a super read.

    7. Fascinating story of intrigue, law enforcement, old documents and church politics. This was a real page turner.

    8. It wasn’t until I was serving a full-time Mormon mission that I heard anything about Mark Hofmann and his forgeries. And then I didn’t hear much, certainly nothing official. Like so much in Mormon history, this contemporary episode quickly became something ‘in the past’ that ‘isn’t faith promoting’ and therefore ‘isn’t discussed.’ Yet, it’s a classic example of the business-related fraud that is said to run rampant in Utah, where trusting church-goers often prove to be easy [...]

    9. I can't believe I stuck with this book, not because it isn't interesting but because the print is small and it is 565 pages long. I got the book a long time ago and it has sat on my shelf ever since. Finally, I decided to read it. It is well written and quite interesting, keeping me going. Mark Hoffman, the Mormon gone-wrong forger, must have been pretty good at what he did. He forged over a hundred documents of Mormon or US Americana interest. Several of his pieces would have changed how histor [...]

    10. Years ago I'd read another history of 'the Mormon murders' which framed them more in terms of the conflicts between the two major branches of Mormonism than this book does. Reading it, however, probably helped me better appreciate this account, written as it is less from a journalistic and more from an insider perspective.The Mormons have long intrigued me as have similar, latter-day Christian sects like the Jehovah's Witnesses and the Seventh-Day Adventists. While Christianity--orthodox, tradit [...]

    11. This book was quite the ride!My only complaint was that there were so many names to keep straight. There's not much the author could do about that. There were times when I became confused and had to look back to figure out who someone was. It didn't help that I stopped reading in the middle and then came back to it. I have to say that this author did an incredible amount of research and an exceptional job at writing this book!Eye-opening. Steve Christensen was the brother of one of my friends in [...]

    12. I remember vaguely some of these events from when I was little (something about a salamander and a bomb), but I became intrigued with the story when I found out I was working in the same building, on the same floor where the first bomb went off. I walked by it every day. The more I found out about the story the more I wanted to read what happened. Such a bizarre story of what someone will do to protect a lie. There are several books written about these events but I had to search for one that did [...]

    13. When I first read this, I was struck by how easily Mark Hofmann manipulated business associates and LDS church leadership into accepting his improbably serendipitous "finds" as genuine artifacts of Mormon history. Given the ease with which Hofmann insinuated his forgeries into the Mormon collectibles market, one wonders how many other con artists have pulled off similar stunts. Also notable (though perhaps predictable) was the church leaders' apparent lack of candor during the initial murder inv [...]

    14. In general I'm not fond of this style of history where the authors recreate conversations from memory in order to include dialogue. It just gives the work a more subjective tone and feel. I did find the new information it provided on the Hofmann forgery case fascinating, but they don't really provide their sources. Since the author biases come through in passages where the text sounds a little too gleeful about the church being portrayed in a negative light, it makes it difficult to trust the bo [...]

    15. I really enjoyed this book, especially the first two of the three sections. The first section starts with the bombings and runs through the investigation up until the arrest. The second section is basically a biography of Mark Hofmann, with shorter bios of the two victims. Both of those sections were fascinating for me, as I was a young teenager when this all happened and didn't know any of the details of what happened. But being from Utah and a member of the church, I was very familiar with the [...]

    16. A very good non-fiction. A fascinating look at the world of collectable documents within LDS history and US history and what violent lengths Mark Hoffman went to be a major player in this world. I didn't love the way the timeline was presented and felt it could have been constructed in a way that felt more cohesive - but still a good page turner. It is a good reminder that sometimes people do horrible things that just don't make sense, or even help their cause. This strikes as very real and well [...]

    17. I couldn't put this book down. It was a way interesting look at the Mark Hofmann bombings and forgeries. I found that this book was well balanced in a topic that that is often very polarizing, due to the involvement of the LDS Church. It was interesting to learn that so familiar names from contemporary Mormon culture, including one guy from a former ward of mine, were involved in this story. While a couple of chapters were a little slow and the story was very complex, I would highly recommend th [...]

    18. Salamander is a non fiction novel about Mark Hofmann who attempted to forge important lost Mormon documents and consequently blew up those in his way with pipe bombs. It is well written, facinating, and a torpedo to the Mormon chuch which seems to have a very hard time dealing with its true history. Perhaps it is me but I found the sections of the book dealing with the forgeries much more interesting that the sections dealing with the court hearings, other wise I would have given the book five s [...]

    19. This book is a memory that was jostled by another conversation here on .I remember this book leaving me with a lingering impression of the Mormon Church that was less than positive, and yet I simultaneously felt bad that they fell prey to a con man who fed into their religious beliefs.The part I never understood was why, once they had a good idea of what was going on, that they didn't just sever ties but I assume that was because (by then) the Church Elders were in too deep.It's a great story, d [...]

    20. This had the potential of being a lot better. This follows the case of Mark Hoffmann and his dealing with fraud and forgery. He was raised within the LDS Religion and traded and sold to many LDS persons, institutions, and the hierarchy itself. The books was very confusing at times with all the people involved. I think John Grisham or Dan Brown should write a version of this as it is very interesting!

    21. The more I think about this story, the more I appreciate this book. Keep in mind the book is not about the Mormon religion itself (per se), but it is about the culture surrounding the religion and the city itself. You have secret societies and forged documents. And even a cameo appearance by the Uni-bomber to put you on the wrong trail! How much more drama and suspense can you have in one book. As an FYI, there is also at least two other books written about the same time.

    22. The story is painful to read. It tells the real account of a narcissistic murderer. Some of the true characters told of in this book are still alive as of this review.I am glad to know that Mark Hoffman will never walk free. That his work did not eradicate mormonism is unfortunate, but over time it is likely to highlight the non-god-inspired leadership and organization of that church.

    23. I had to read this book again since my husband's cousin wrote it and she recently died. I remember when the book came out in the 80's and I was still kind of a Mormon and this book was really disturbing to me. Obviously my husband's cousin must have been disturbed as well, as she delved into the research for this true story/murder trial revolving around the Mormon church.

    24. this 500+ page book is a great book if you like true crime novels and detective work. it deals with the forgery and bombing case of mark Hofmann which took place in slc ut in the 80s. fascinating book and you can tell the authors really did their research. full of details and a behind the scenes look at interviews with lds apostles etc.

    25. I can't quite figure out why this isn't five stars for me. It was pretty much a perfect, fascinating book.And for anyone who's wondering, this book isn't overtly anti-Mormon - the authors don't editorialize at all.

    26. This is unreadable. They introduce too many names all at once, and the whole story is very muddled. I put this down after about two chapters, because, though I really wanted to know the story, I felt that if I kept reading, I wasn't going to understand anything I read anyway.

    27. Wow, what an amazing tragic story. It's really sad that the most gifted, evil forger of history happened to be a member of the Church. This was a long, very intricate true crimes story, but held me riveted for several days. Truly tragic, worth the time.

    28. I enjoyed reading about this real life mormon murder scandal. My friend here in Ririe, is a sister-in-law to one of the bomb victims. Crazy that this all happened close to temple square and it revolved around forged church documents. Very interesting.

    29. This book is an excellent resource for seeing into the mind of Mark Hoffman and understanding what happened in Salt Lake City during the early eighties. It gets a little dry in parts but the history of Mark Hoffman from youth to mastermind con-artist and killer is absolutely fascinating.

    30. the details of the forgery process Hoffman used get a little boring and the LDS church's involvement is treated with kid gloves, but the details of the bombings and insight into the mind of a sociopath are great. a good read for any salt laker.

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