This book presents a compelling answer to the question that many LDS readers like me have wondered: "If temple worship is so vital to the eternal gospel, how come it's not directly described or advocated in the Book of Mormon?"
Dusting off the book-as-journey analogy, we travel in _Plain and Precious Things_ through the history surrounding ancient and meridian-of-time Palestine, through significant moments in Christ's ministry and several famous passages of Book of Mormon scripture.
I liked Butler's identification of "visionary men," a term he gives (as I understood it) to temple-conscious, anti-establishment groups who often separated themselves for purity-of-worship's sake--e.g. Qumran and Lehi's family. While historically based, the designation adds a literary quality to the book's human subjects.
I was impressed by the fascinating, adroitly-argued connections linking temple imagery between ancient Old World texts and Book of Mormon passages. I found some of these links more creatively constructed than others, but I appreciated that Butler clearly identifies when he's speculating.
Speaking of whom, going back to the book-journey metaphor, my greatest admiration is for our guide. He's taken a complex subject and informally yet authoritatively walked readers through it. Compared to the daunting, exhaustive treatise this easily could've been, Butler's book approaches readers and the Gospel with good-natured, big-hearted affection--one of the qualities I seek most in my spiritual traveling companions.