Pillar of Light: A Historical Novel

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Pillar of Light: A Historical Novel
Author Gerald N. Lund
Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1990

Pillar of Light: A Historical Novel

Reviewer Richard H. Cracroft

Writing from a deep-seated belief in the divinity of the Church's origins, Gerald N. Lund has crafted a well-written and often moving Latter-day Saint historical novelÑa genre in which there are many proclaiming "Lo, here," but in which there are few works about which readers can cry, "Lo, there!" Pillar of Light is a "lo there!" kind of accomplishment, a good novel which I recommend to Latter-day Saint readers. Some Modern-day Saints will doubtless wince about its being so unabashedly grounded in the Mormon cosmos, but most will see that grounding as a refreshing point of departure, grant Mr. Lund his donnŽe, and hail this novel as the solid contribution to the literature of the Latter-day Saints which it undoubtedly is.

Pillar of Light is a faithful recounting of the historical and religious events of the Restoration from March 1827 through April 1830, often as told by the young Prophet Joseph, the primary figure of the Restoration but only a secondary character in the novel. The book is a fictional conversion story celebrating the nascent Church's impact upon Benjamin and Mary Ann Morgan Steed and upon their sons, the rebellious Joshua (age 20) and his younger and believing brother, Nathan (age 18); and, less directly, upon Melissa (age 16), Rebecca (age 9), and Matthew (age 7).

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