Author Matthew B. Brown describes this subject as "rugged terrain."
But in writing "Exploring the Connection Between Mormons and Masons," Brown attempts to navigate readers toward "greater clarity about the early history of the LDS Church and a stronger conviction of the reality of the Restoration."
In doing so, Brown appeals to the historical record to "accurately define what is history and what is mythology when it comes to Mormonism's relationship with Masonry."
"The investigation of this topic must be centered on historically verifiable realities and not on romantic notions and legendary tales," he writes.
Brown introduces his work by posing a number of intriguing questions about a subject that "rarely reaps a dull verbal or emotional response from a crowd." For example, he promises that Chapter 7, called "History, Theory and Myth," will deal "heavy blows to several long-standing myths (among Saints and critics alike)."
But this is not an expose. Brown also promises a careful and respectful approach. References made to the LDS temple are limited to that which has been discussed in church publications and the Encyclopedia of Mormonism. Likewise, Brown applies the "rules of common courtesy" when discussing Masonic lodges.
Brown's "Mormons and Masons" (2009) is published by Covenant Communications. It is available in print or unabridged book on CD. A 40-minute DVD is also available for purchase, which provides a visual supplement and commentary from additional voices such as Richard E. Bennett, author of "The Nauvoo Legion in Illinois," and Glen A. Cook, former past Grand Master of Utah Masons and a Latter-day Saint.