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This book could become the definative work on Joseph Smith. Its primary fault however is that it tries to straddle both sides of the "who is Joseph Smith question" Bushman does this by avoiding the question altogether. Making good use of contemporary sources, Bushman tries to show Joseph Smith from the view point of those who knew him, including his followers and his most ardent detractors. Bushman makes no effort to hide his belief in the divinity of Joseph Smith's calling. He does not, however, fall into the trap of avoiding events in Joseph Smith's life that do not contribute to that belief.
A little long for those with a casual interest in the Life of Joseph Smith.
 

Review: Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling

User Review  - Sarah - Goodreads

5 stars for the amount of research and work that went into this book! It was long and sometimes put me to sleep in one page so 3 stars for that. But overall a really interesting and eye opening book ... Read full review

Review: Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling

User Review  - Lachlan - Goodreads

Slow in parts but finishes well. An enormous amount of information with even more in the footnotes. Read full review

Review: Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling

User Review  - Jen - Goodreads

I admit this took me forever to read. There was a lot of new (to me) information that I really wanted to think about and check out. The new church published essays helped with that. Extremely ... Read full review

Review: Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling

User Review  - Cindy - Goodreads

Felt a renewed connection, love, affirmation of the prophet Joseph Smith. Read full review

Review: Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling

User Review  - Misty - Goodreads

Very comprehensive. Despite the fact that as a member of the church Joseph Smith founded he is surely slightly biased, Bushman does a great job of reviewing and critiquing competing sources. I felt like I was able to understand Joseph Smith as a person and not an idealized martyr. Read full review

Review: Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling

User Review  - Tiffany - Goodreads

This book was equally fascinating because of the fantastic events and brutally long as it read like a textbook. Even though I struggled to get through it in time to return to the library, I found ... Read full review

Review: Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling

User Review  - Diana - Goodreads

Extremely interesting and thorough. Fairly well balanced (though I would argue the scales definitely tip toward a faithful perspective), does not shirk from the more sketchy parts of Joseph's history ... Read full review

Review: Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling

User Review  - Morgan - Goodreads

Thought this book was very enlightening and forth write. Bushman writes with honesty and open-mindedness though BYU professor. He tells it like it was in Joseph Smiths time; superbly gives us a ... Read full review

Review: Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling

User Review  - Phyrman21 - Goodreads

Good book with additional details about the life of Joseph Smith. Bushman doesn't hold back in some aspects. Not completely full of praise. Criticizes some things from the life of Joseph. Over all I liked it. But not for the casual reader. Read full review


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Goodreads - 327