Joseph Smith and the Restoration, by Ivan J. Barrett, was written as a text for undergraduate students taking LDS Church history classes at Brigham Young University. Any student who carefully reads this text will gain dramatic insights into the life of the Prophet Joseph Smith and into the Church and kingdom of God during his lifetime. Professor Barrett has literally filled his Chapters with colorful stories and historical tidbits which make his Church history come alive. This text is not a dry or boring history; it is one of the finest texts of its kind to be written in the Church. Its author is to be commended for the years of historical investigation incorporated into the pages of his work.
The quality of his historical research is commendable, having relatively few errors and most of those quite minor. Perhaps more serious matters relating to the quality of his research would be: (I) The handling of quotations, (II) the conspicuous lack of credit given to some of the finest sources and works available to date on many of the subjects treated, and (III) the basic philosophy to the study of LDS Church history—the writer’s point of view and objectives.