The Last Mile of the Way

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The third and final volume of the Stand on the Promises trilogy covers the period from the 1890s to the present. The saga of the early black Mormon pioneers continues in this novel. The story depicts the lives of the descendants of the original pioneers as they struggle against the fortunes of the twentieth century, including war and poverty. But beyond the challenges facing many people, they have to content with blatant racism, still a common blight in parts of the United States. In addition, they have to contend with relentless bigotry because of their choice of faith.

Margaret Blair Young and Darius Aidan Gray create fascinating tales of personal challenges and enduring determination. While the characters are fictional, they are firmly rooted in real people. The historical detail is plentiful, and each chapter has endnotes that are interesting and instructive, although it may distract some readers from the fictional narrative. I would recommend this book to anyone interested in exploring a little known, yet fascinating aspect of twentieth century American history. If the first two volumes are as carefully researched and written as this novel, they too would be worth exploring.



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12 of the best stories selected from the 2012 Historical Novel Society Short Story Award






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