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"Probably the best church history novel I've ever read, and I've read just about all of them. I was amazed how well polygamy, masonry, the martyrdom, and the trial of the murderers of Joseph and Hyrum were handled. It was almost like being there. The research is astounding and the story surrounding the characters riveting. I couldn't put it down."
Norma Wengreen Orem, Utah
"I can't tell you how exciting it has been to find a book about the life of my ancestors, Robert and Hannah Harris. I can see Robert's personality in many of my relatives. I realize this is a historical novel, but I've heard these stories about my great-great grandfather for years. I wept when I gave volume one of LIGHT & TRUTH to my children. I can't wait for the final volume to be written! This is my heritage!"
Helen Tanner Green Las Vegas, Nevada
The Field Is White
Bobby is a hard-headed egotistical British fighter, who has withdrawn from religion altogether. Hannah tries every way she can think of to change his ways, even opposing his career in pugilism. Daniel jumps at the chance to be heavily involved with John Benbow and Thomas Kington in their new church, seen as a radical move by his mother. Elizabeth supports Daniel, but is Bobby's biggest fan in the boxing world. After all, he is her brother.
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The Gathering
A rising trepidation swept over Daniel Browett. He stood on the forecastle of the Echo, gazing southeast across the sea. In a small wooden ship driven by cloth sails, he must deliver a company of faith Saints safely across the treacherous Atlantic Ocean, and from there by steamboat up the Mississippi River to Nauvoo.
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The Nauvoo Years
Elizabeth Browett had reached a boiling point. "See this teapot?" she yelled. "It's mine. See this cup? It's mine. See this cabin? It's mine. Get out!"
"You're being ridiculous," her husband, Daniel, stammered.
Elizabeth pushed the cup into Daniel's chest, spilling composition tea onto his shirt. "You already know what's ridiculous-plural marriage! Gather up your things!"
Daniel cast a glance at his brother-in-law, Robert. Robert drew his shoulders up in gesture of helplessness. He had not been who asked Daniel to take Harriet Clifford Barnes as a plural wife.
That had been Joseph Smith, Wilford Woodruff, and Orson Hyde-almost like a church calling.
Elizabeth threw Daniel's heavy coat at him and pointed to the door. "Out!"
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The Mormon Battallion
Robert was terrified that rumors might be true that a Mexican army of five thousand men was trying to overtake and capture the Battalion as it traveled toward Tucson. Last night a Spanish sheep driver had run away, fearing the rumor to be true. Now everyone was worried, even Colonel Cooke.
"It stands to reason that the Mexicans would send a big army out after us," one of the soldiers in E company said as the men made camp along the San Pedro River.
"If there's a big Mexican army, I hope it heads toward Santa Fe, not toward us," Sgt. Daniel Browett added. The American army had dragoons there, better equipped to fight. "They'll be wanting to recapture Santa Fe. Brigham Young said we might have to fight wild animals, but not Mexican soldiers."
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The Journey Home
Robert expected Daniel to make the decision to press on to the Salt Lake Valley, but he didn't. Daniel threw his lot with the men who were returning to Sutter's Fort.
"What do you want me to tell Elizabeth and Harriet?" Robert asked around a campfire in the high Sierras.
"Tell them that I am following the counsel of Brigham Young," Daniel replied with a sad look. "I have no children. If anyone should follow Brigham's directive to work for a year in California, it's me."
Robert let the reality of the situation settle over him. Daniel's turning back would mean the two men would be separated for the first time in thirteen years. "Your wives will be sorely puzzled," Robert said.
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Life History of Robert Harris
The Kaysville, Utah, cemetery contains the prominent headstone of Robert Harris, Jr., who was converted to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by Wilford Woodruff in England, lived in Nauvoo, Illinois, from 1841 to 1846, marched in the Mormon Battalion, and helped settle Kaysville and Portage, Utah. There are two women buried at his side. One is his wife, Hannah Maria Eagles Harris; the other is his sister, Elizabeth Harris Browett. Elizabeth's husband, Daniel, is buried in California, where Indians murdered him and his two companions in the Sierra-Nevada Mountains as he tried to lead Mormon Battalion soldiers into the Salt Lake Valley in 1848.
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