Thursday, July 16, 2015

LDS NONFICTION: How We Got the Book of Mormon by Richard E. Turley Jr. and William W. Slaughter


From the moment a fourteen-year-old Joseph Smith decided to enter a grove of trees near his home to pray to the Lord about which church he should join, the stage was set for the eventual translation and publication of the Book of Mormon. In How We Got the Book of Mormon, authors Richard Turley and William Slaughter recount in words and pictures the trials, setbacks, and eventual successes that have led to more than 150 million copies printed over the lifetime of the book.

Beginning with Joseph Smith's initial visit from the angel Moroni, How We Got the Book of Mormon marks each major step in the production of the Book of Mormon, from its translation to the difficulties Joseph Smith and his followers had finding its first printer, then on to each major edition, detailing the changes and refinements that each edition brought to the book.

Photographs and other illustrations enhance the text, bringing history to life with portraits of the individuals involved, historical photographs of the locations under discussion, and scans of pages of the various editions of the Book of Mormon to illustrate how its presentation has changed over years. How We Got the Book of Mormon gives readers a unique look at the history of a unique book, the keystone of the Restoration.


While I was familiar with the history surrounding the original publication of the Book of Mormon, I wasn't as familiar with the editions coming after that.  I found it fascinating to follow the history of all the major editions of the Book of Mormon and the experiences associated with them.  The miracles surrounding the publication of the second edition I found particularly intriguing.  But I think what I loved most about this book were the photographs and illustrations that showed the different people and places involved in the publication of the Book of Mormon.  The scans of pages from the various editions helped me see the changes that occurred over time as the leaders of the church worked to make the book as easy to read and understand as possible.  I thoroughly enjoyed this account of one particular aspect of the history of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

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