"Will wonders never cease." That's what Kyle Hooper's mom, Lucille, would say to him whenever he did something surprisingly good in the new LDS novel from Douglas Thayer. Will Wonders Never Cease is about a fictional teenager named Kyle, who gets himself in a predicament, and has to realize what he believes to find the strength to survive.
I think representing Mormonism through fiction can be done quite well and accurately, but not all of it is going to be exact. What an author may create in their mind as to which LDS rituals should be insanely overdone in their novel may turn the reader away from the LDS faith. Especially if it was someone who is unfamiliar with Mormon culture. The same goes with the way Kyle Hooper sees his religion. I know that he is really starting to learn what he believes in this book and he's very sarcastic about everything, but there were many times that I felt like I should defend my religion. This book has to have the correct audience; the way that Kyle Hooper seems to make fun of it.
Personally, I would rather read a fiction novel over non-fiction more often than not. But take "Meet the Mormons" for example. If the stories in that movie were expanded with more details into a non-fiction book, I would instantly read it. Non-fiction would be a better way to portray the "Mormon experience" because it can provide real insight of real people and their lives. Sheri Dew also writes great non-fiction books on how the LDS religion works, her most recent one titled, Women and the Priesthood: What One Mormon Woman Believes. Non-fiction would be more accurate because of the ability to tell real stories, real experiences, real emotions, real solutions. Not just a scenario that was made up in someone's head.
Depending on the audience and the way they represent LDS culture, both non-fiction and fiction books can accurately portray Mormon experience. Will Wonders Never Cease needed a Mormon audience, who could recognize the sarcasm of Kyle Hooper's religious experiences.