NOTE: this is an entry in the AMV Guide to Mormon Literature series. Click here for more details on the series.
Angel of the Danube: Barry Monroe’s Missionary Journal is a novel by Alan Rex Mitchell published in 2000 by Bonneville Books. Mitchell re-released it in 2010 under his Greenjacket Books trade name. As the subtitle suggests, the novel is written as a series of journal entries, but in a unique twist the entries are written after Barry returns from his mission. As he relates his often comic mission (mis)adventures, Barry also reflects on what they mean as well as what he is going to do with his post-mission life. The novel is notable not only for its narrative structure, but also for its unique voice which blends California surfer dude, LDS mission lingo and Austrian German as well as and mixing the comic and dramatic modes of fiction.
Missionary Fiction; Romance; Comedy; Fictional Memoir
- Eternal Marriage
- Barry Monroe, a So-Cal dude who is called to the Austria Vienna mission
- Anna Magdalena, an Austrian Frau who investigates the Church and is fond of relating Austrian folk tales
- Unts, Barry’s mission companion and compatriot
- Austria, especially Vienna
- So-Cal, mainly the LA area
- The Mojave Desert
- It won the Marilyn Brown Novel Award in 2000.
- 2. Richard Cracroft compared it to Saul Bellow’s Henderson the Rain King. I’ve read both. It’s better.
- Each chapter heading features an illustration by Charissa Yang Sullivan.
- It averages 1.7 uses of the word Dude per page (just kidding — I don’t have an electronic version of the manuscript, but if I did, I would tell you the true number).
- How much you like this book will depend quite a bit on how you react to the ending.
I welcome feedback on this entry. Anyone who provides it will be included in a list of co-conspirators which will be published in the final version of the guide. In particular, I’m interested in hearing if a) the format seems useful and/or interesting; b) whether or not you think I chose the right items to include the Themes and Main Characters sections; and c) if there is anything else that should be added to the To Know section.