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What's new: 'Wagons West: Brigham Young and the First Pioneers' shares LDS history for younger readers

Co-authored by Richard E. Turley and Lael Littke, "Wagons West" is a simple, clear retelling of the Latter-day Saint journey that will help readers of all ages to experience life on the pioneer trail.
Co-authored by Richard E. Turley and Lael Littke, "Wagons West" is a simple, clear retelling of the Latter-day Saint journey that will help readers of all ages to experience life on the pioneer trail.
Provided by Deseret Book

"WAGONS WEST: Brigham Young and the First Pioneers," by Richard E. Turley Jr. and Lael Littke, Deseret Book, $18.99, 152 pages (nf)

How much do your children really know about the Mormon pioneers?

"Wagons West: Brigham Young and the First Pioneers," co-authored by Richard E. Turley Jr. and Lael Littke, was written and designed for young readers and others who would appreciate a simple narrative that closely follows historic facts.

"We hope readers of this book might later become interested in more serious history works that deal in greater detail with matters too complicated for this volume," the co-authors wrote in the book's preface.

The narrative begins in Nauvoo, Illinois, in 1844 after the deaths of Joseph and Hyrum Smith, and follows The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as the Saints are driven west to Winter Quarters, Nebraska, and on to the Rocky Mountains and the Salt Lake Valley. The book is divided into chapters of a comfortable length for bedtime reading, the co-authors wrote in the preface.

In addition to the historical facts presented, the co-authors bring the story to life with pioneer accounts of heroics and faith, as well as humor. Rich photographs and other visual elements complement the text.

All quotations, including dialogue, come from original documents, but have been edited for updated spelling, capitalization and punctuation to make the stories easier for younger readers to understand. The writers purposely decided not to include source notes for fear of discouraging younger readers, but have included a selected bibliography of recommended readings, according to the book's preface.

"We hope readers will enjoy these stories for many generations to come," Turley and Littke wrote in the preface.