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(This book is the result of) 60 years of academic study of ancient Mesoamerica and its relationship to the Book of Mormon. Here Sorenson reveals that the Book of Mormon exhibits what one would expect of a historical document produced in the context of ancient Mesoamerican civilization.

He also shows that scholars discoveries about Mesoamerica and the contents of the Nephite record are clearly related. Indeed, Sorenson lists more than 400 points where the Book of Mormon text corresponds to characteristic Mesoamerican situations, statements, allusions, and history. Are we to simply suppose that mere coincidence can account for similarities of this magnitude? The parallels are too striking and too sweeping to answer in the affirmative.

Even the greatest savant of the early 19th century let alone a marginally literate frontier farm boy could not possibly have produced a volume as rich in Mesoamericana as the Book of Mormon. The only format in which a record such as the Book of Mormon could have been preserved is that of a native Mesoamerican book, referred to by scholars as a codex.

According to the record itself, the text was compiled by a man named Mormon, who lived in the Mesoamerican isthmus area in the late fourth century. Mormon passed the record to his son Moroni, who survived him by more than 35 years and made modest additions to the text.

A significant contribution to the fields of Book of Mormon studies and Mesoamerican studies, Mormon's Codex is John Sorenson's magnum opus. It contains copious explanatory material, extensive footnotes, over 1,300 bibliographical references, illustrations, an appendix, and detailed maps. This long-awaited volume will appeal to informed general readers, archaeologists, and scholars alike.

 

Amazon Review By Kirk A. Magleby on September 11, 2013
 
In 1976, John L. Sorenson published "The Book of Mormon as a Mesoamerican Codex." That was followed by his 1985 landmark "An Ancient American Setting for the Book of Mormon." Now, at age 89, the dean of LDS Mesoamericanists has capped his life's work with a handsomely-illustrated, weighty volume that will define him to the next generation of Book of Mormon students and scholars.

This book will become a classic and remain in print for decades as his 1985 piece has done. John and I have been friends since 1974. He is a meticulous scholar who grasps the big picture but pays attention to minute details. At BYU, his long rows of filing cabinets were legendary. Author of more than 200 scholarly works, Sorenson is in a class with Hugh W. Nibley and John W. Welch as scholars of Mormonism and particularly the Mormon canon. Sorenson and Welch worked together for nearly 30 years at F.A.R.M.S. (Foundation for Ancient Research and Mormon Studies), now the Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship at BYU.

Heavily footnoted with an 85 page bibliography, "Mormon's Codex: An Ancient American Book" has thoughtful insights on nearly every page. Don't let the hefty price deter you. Serious students of the Book of Mormon should read this book which will occupy a place of honor in LDS and Restoration Branch libraries for years to come.