Saturday, June 9, 2007

Change of goals

I am modifying my goal of reading a book a week. I might be able to do that, but there are several lengthier, heavier reads that I'd like to finish, and I am still responsible for my children's education!

Numerically, I haven't picked a goal but there are several books I need to/want to read. Right now I am reading Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling, A cultural biography of Mormonism's founder, by Richard Lyman Bushman. What I really appreciate is the fact that he lets his readers know his bias, motivations, and sources. He holds no secrets, and he has studied volumes of materials in putting together his book.

I know that some have criticized his book for being too pro-Joseph Smith while others have criticized it for the opposite. Given that, I was optomistic that it would be reasonably objective without being an anti- piece of lit. (I have a serious disdain for anti-anything without a pro-something.) My cousin (an attorney and author) has also been involved in a massive research project regarding the prophet, Joseph Smith, so I am somewhat familiar with the quantity of scholarly material that is out there. This book has stayed true to the author's stated mission. He has not shyed away from topics nor does he feel he has to sum it up for his readers. I'm only to page 122, and I have learned much and gained much. I think he has actually attained a level of objectivity, which is pretty incredible given the subject.

I look forward to completing it. I have to have it read by July 4 so I can send it home with my folks. It's their book, and I have grown distrustful of the mails down in these parts. That gives me a chapter a day to read. Even with longer chapters, that's do-able.

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