Wednesday, August 7, 2013
Come to Zion, New Series by Dean Hughes
I love learning about history, but I don't love reading straight non-fiction books on the subject. Enter Dean Hughes and his incredible talent for weaving fact and fiction into a story that brings the past to the present, engaging the reader in historical events that will leave a lasting impression. This is how I like to learn history!
I read The Winds and The Waves, Volume 1 of a 3 Volume series and I can't wait to finish Through Cloud and Sunshine (Vol 2). This details events from the beginnings of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and follows a fictional family from Great Britain across the sea to join the saints in Nauvoo, Illinois. As a member of the LDS Church, I've heard many stories and details of the difficulties the early members faced. This story brings everything up front and present with a clarity that gave me an even deeper respect for these early pioneers.
And if it wasn't enough to share with you how incredible these books are, I have something quite amazing to share. Through Cloud and Sunshine is the 100th published book of author Dean Hughes. WOW! Can you imagine writing 100 books? I can dream . . .
Info on The Winds and The Waves:
Will Lewis is stuck. the class system in England in the 1840s seems destined to keep him in his place as a poor tenant farmer who cannot improve his lot and will never be able to marry the woman he loves. But the "new religion" that is sweeping through congregations of the United Brethren, Will's church, may hold the key to the better life he longs for. As he listens to the preaching of Wilford Woodruff, he almost dares to hope for the Zion the young Apostle describes.
Will's struggles to believe and to face the rigors of immigrating to an unknown land are paralleled by the modern-day story of Jeff and Abby, a young married couple facing challenges of their own. When Jeff begins digging into his family history, he finds himself particularly drawn to "Grandpa Lewis," an ancestor whose life was more like his than he would have imagined.
The skillful interweaving of these two stories brings Church history to life while demonstrating how much we can learn from those who went before us. Anyone who has ever faced the winds and the waves, in some form, will love this novel.
Info on Through Cloud and Sunshine:
Nauvoo was supposed to be the kingdom of God on earth, but Will and Liz Lewis are learning that it takes more than dreaming of Zion to make it a reality. Sickness, poverty, and just plain human nature add to the struggles for the Lord's people, but every now and then a glimpse of heaven shines through. Just when things are starting to get settled, though, the old problems start rearing their heads, leaving Will and others wondering if they will be there to reap the harvest they have so carefully sown.
Meanwhile, Jeff and Abby—in modern-day Nauvoo—are dealing with challenges of their own. As their newborn baby fights for his life, they must come to grips with their personal faith. Can they, like their ancestors, continue to trust in God when there seems to be no trace o Him in their trials?
Beloved novelist Dean Hughes skillfully interweaves the stories of two couples separated by five generations and 150 years, providing a unique perspective on Church history and showing how much we can learn from those who went before us.
Available at Deseret Book.com here
I received review copies in exchange for posting on my blog, my opinions are my own and I delight in sharing great books with my readers.