Mette Ivie HarrisonLinda Wallheim is the mother of five grown boys and the wife of a Mormon bishop in Utah. Linda’s unofficial job as bishop’s wife is to support her husband and act as de facto mother to the ward. But when those close to her are in danger, she can no longer suppress her misgivings about the church’s patriarchal structure and secrecy.
The fourth installment in Mette Ivie Harrison’s nationally bestselling Linda Wallheim mystery series, set in Mormon Utah, explores the effects of alienation, immigration, and extortion from the inner workings of the Mormon church.
Now that all five of her sons have left home, Mormon bishop’s wife Linda Wallheim has quite a bit of time on her hands, most of which she spends worrying about the state of the country and how her youngest son, Samuel, who is openly gay, is faring on his mission in Boston. She has also become close with one of the women in her ward, Gwen Ferris.
But Gwen is quickly losing faith in the church, and her issues with the Mormon power structure are only reinforced by her work in Draper’s local “Spanish ward.” The ward’s members comprise both legal and undocumented immigrants who aren’t always getting the community support they should be from their church.
When Gabriela Gonzalez, a young mother and Gwen’s friend in the Spanish Ward, is found strangled at a gas station, Gwen is paralyzed with guilt. The dead woman’s last phone call was to Gwen, and her voice mail reveals that she knew she was in danger. When Gwen decides the police aren’t doing enough to get justice for Gabriela, who was undocumented, she decides to find the killer herself. Linda reluctantly takes part in Gwen’s vigilante sleuthing, fearing for her young friend’s safety, but what the pair discovers may put them both in danger.
The Mormon church may have disavowed the polygamy it became so infamous for in the 19th century, but for some Fundamentalist Latter-Day Saints, “plural marriage” isn’t just ancient history.
Mormon bishop’s wife Linda Wallheim couldn’t be more surprised to learn that her son Kenneth is engaged. Kenneth has left the Mormon church, and met his fiancée, med student Naomi Carter, at a “Mormons Anonymous” meeting. Naomi was also raised Mormon—but her family belongs to a group that practices polygamy. Naomi’s father, Stephen, invites the Wallheims to visit the family compound. Though Stephen and his five wives seem to live normal, modern lives, Linda can’t shake the feeling that the family dynamics are off. When tensions on the compound escalate to murder, Linda delves into the many Carter family secrets to find the killer.
In the follow-up to the controversial and critically acclaimed mystery The Bishop’s Wife, Mormon housewife Linda Wallheim finds herself ruffling feathers in Draper, Utah, as she assists a murder investigation that is being derailed by transphobia within the LDS community.
In Draper, Utah, a tight-knit Mormon community is thrown into upheaval when their ward’s second counselor—one of the bishop’s right-hand men—is found dead in an elaborately staged murder on church property. Carl Ashby was known as a devout Mormon, a pillar of the community, and a loving husband and father. Who would want him dead?
Linda Wallheim, the wife of the ward’s bishop, can’t rest as long as the ward is suffering. She is particularly worried about Carl’s grieving family. But the entire case is turned upside down by the autopsy report, which reveals Carl Ashby was a biological female. In the Mormon church, where gender is considered part of a person’s soul, some people regard transgenderism as one of the worst possible sins. Church officials seem to be more upset by Carl’s gender than by his murder, and more concerned with hushing up the story than solving the crime.
Linda realizes that if the police are to catch the killer, they are going to need an ally on the inside—and she is the only one who can help. Carl was living a life of secrecy for twenty years. What else was he hiding—and can Linda ferret out the key to his death before the rumors tear her community apart?
In the predominantly mormon city of Draper, Utah, some seemingly perfect families have deadly secrets.
Linda Wallheim is a devout Mormon, mother of five boys and wife of a bishop. But Linda’s daily routine of church-going, Relief Society meetings, and visiting church ward members is turned upside down as a disturbing situation takes shape in her seemingly idyllic neighborhood. Young wife and mother Carrie Helm has disappeared. Carrie’s husband, Jared, claims that she has abandoned the family, but Linda doesn’t trust him. As she snoops, trying to learn more about the Helms’ circumstances, Linda becomes convinced Jared murdered his wife and painted himself as a wronged husband.
Inspired by a chilling true crime and written by a practicing Mormon, The Bishop’s Wife is both a fascinating peek into the lives of modern Mormons and a grim and cunningly twisted mystery.