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Anyone Read This?


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Because the review says she helped write the PBS upcoming Mormonism show, it makes me wonder what that will turn out to be. The amazon reviews are diametrically opposed. http://www.amazon.com/Falling-Love-Joseph-Smith-Prophet/dp/1585429252/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top

He was a Prophet and would be sickened by so much attention to him and too little to Christ...as would any Prophet.
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Falling in Love with Joseph Smith, Jane Barnes

Just looking for a couple of reviews or opinions

I read an excerpt from the book on Salon.com. I didn't think it was very good.

For example, Barnes claims that "Joseph himself wasn’t totally convinced of his visions." How does she know this? Because "some claimed that on several emotional occasions, Joseph admitted he had never seen anything with his peep stone." Uh huh. She then quotes Fawn Brodie quoting Peter Ingersoll quoting Joseph Smith as saying "I have got the damned fools fixed, and will carry out the fun." Gee, that sounds just like something Joseph would say, doesn't it?

Based of her reading of Brodie, Barnes "feels" that "Joseph swung in and out of belief and nothingness" (what does that even mean?) between 1823 and 1827. Thus, Joseph fabricated fake gold plates "under the twin pressures of his faith and his despair."

Apart from her dubious historical judgments and flaky analysis of Joseph Smith's inner life, Barnes skill as a researcher is also suspect. She claims, for example, that Peter Ingersoll and Willard Chase testified at Joseph Smith's 1826 court hearing even though neither of these men are mentioned as witnesses in any extant account of the trial, or indeed in any secondary source that I am aware of. Maybe the book has some redeeming qualities somewhere, but I have no plans to buy it.

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