Top critical review
6 people found this helpful
Braver than most but rarely strays outside orthodoxy
on 5 April 2009
I do like it and it's a challenging book for LDS members who want some meat with their historical milk. Very eye opening in places if you've never been exposed to anything more than standard LDS manuals. Easy to read and gives a very good overall coverage of the history and the man. Joseph is more fascinating when we see him having arguments, coming to blows, managing crisis after crisis (many of his own doing) and struggling to build a church in a very turbulent time. Joseph is portrayed much more realistically than you'll get in standard pro Joseph books and he comes out so much the better for it - a flawed genius rather than a demi-god. 2 stars missing because he skirted around some areas (presumably to maintain his membership!) and due to a lack of maps and pictures with the text.
Definately get it if you want a good solid church history focused on Joseph and to understand why some of the doctrines appeared when they did (Ok that was controversial - to re-phrase - the context of those revelations.) Depending on where your beliefs are you'll find both justification and challenge to your feelings regarding Joseph.