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A Banner Is Unfurled (A Banner is Unfurled, #1)
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A Banner Is Unfurled (A Banner is Unfurled #1)

4.01 of 5 stars 4.01  ·  rating details  ·  336 ratings  ·  79 reviews
Ezekiel Johnson feels like he is losing his family one by one. It is the 1820s, and years earlier, Ezekiel had fled his abusive stepfather and his loving, yet browbeaten mother promising he would never return. He vowed that when he had a family they would be bound together in freedom, happiness, and love. But now this strange, new Mormon religion seems to have captured the ...more
Published (first published January 1st 2005)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 550)
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Alice
As you know I don't get many things 5 stars, but this one is very special and close to my heart. It is about my people and not just my religious group MY ANCESTORS. I am the great-great-great-great granddaughter of Ezekiel and Julia Johnson. The story is of course fictionalized but based on facts. I am in awe. My mom and I are in a race to read them. I do not give it 5 stars because of the family connection, but the story is actually riveting and inspiring! There are many times I heard myself sa ...more
Sherrill
This is sort of the Steed family of The Work and the Glory revisited except that it is a documented account of the family of famous Mormon pioneer B.F. Johnson's. This man seems to be the progenitor of at least half of the population of modern day Mesa. It is full of family poetry and quotes from diaries. Apparently this family kept great records. It recounts their conversion stories and their meetings with the prophet. I am always a pushover for historical novels and have already begun volume 2 ...more
Cheryl
Oh no! I have found another LDS historical novels series to get wrapped up into! Luckily, (or unfortunately--depending on point of view)there are only 3 books in this series.

The A Banner is Unfurled series deals with some of the issues of the early LDS Church from a different perspective than others that I have read and use an actual, historically correct family to frame the story. Volume 1 was wonderfully engaging for me. I found myself with tears on my cheeks so many times reading of the strug
...more
Heather
May 31, 2008 Heather rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Heather by: Marta
Shelves: lds-fiction
WOW! I love this book. It is such a realistic account of a family being converted to the gospel and also includes real people outside of the family interactions and events with them.
Julia is such a wonderful mother, she has fifteen children and has taught them so well, that when the mormon children comes along they are prepared to open their hearts and listen and pray intent on what is right, Seth had the hardest time out of the children, he couldn't figure if Joseph was a false prophet. Elder B
...more
Lisa
I have avoided reading fictionalized accounts of early LDS history, as I didn't want to confuse fiction with history, but I read a review that said this is an excellent series and thought I'd try it. I'm glad I did--this series is based on the history of the Johnson family, from whom the authors are descended, and is meticulously researched while being a great story. If only all our family histories were as well-documented as this one! I was interested enough to read the footnotes at the back of ...more
Michelle
Sep 19, 2008 Michelle rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: all
Recommended to Michelle by: Grover
I'm actually on book 3 in this series now - but, I'll switch it to my "read" column after I'm finished with all that is written in this series. They have been VERY good. They are quite similar to "Work and Glory" books. I really like that they are based on real people - and the story line is formulated from these peoples' journals, poetry, and writings ... along with the church history.

All three took me awhile to read, actually - but, the more serious books usually do. I HIGHLY recommend this s
...more
Linda
This is an interesting church history book. I like how it addresses the problems of the time. I had a little bit of a hard time getting into it but ended up enjoying it very much.
Casie
What I love about this series is that it is about my mother-in-law's ancestors. The mother and father of this book, Julia and Ezekiel Johnson had a son they named George Washington. George is my mother-in-law's great, great grandfather. Isn't that amazing!? The story was a little slow for me, but the history of it being family kept me reading. I will say I have also read the rest of the series and this was the slowest book for me. I couldn't put down the rest of the series because it is jam pack ...more
Jenny
Better than The Work and The Glory and based on true lives
Lydia
I was hoping this book would book would be the beginning of a series that I could love as much as I love the Work and the Glory...and I was disappointed. Don't get me wrong, the book was good, and I plan on reading the rest of the series, but I just can't rate it up there with Work and the Glory. One thing I do love though, is that this book is about a real family is church history, and that's interesting to me. For my friends who like LDS historical fiction, I'd say, give it a try and see how y ...more
Leslie
This series has 3 volumes which I read. The information is taken from real journal accounts during the first few year of the Church's existance and the move to Kirtland. It is written as a novel and shows the feelings of many people at that time, when the temple was dedicated through the fighting in the temple and it being taken over by the people against Joseph Smith. I found the history and stories of all three volumes interesting and marveled at the strength of the true followers and what the ...more
Amber
My husband and I listened to this book on audio last summer(07). It is a true story about my husband's heritage. Our daughter's middle name comes from Julia Hills Johnson in the book. These books(there is a second volume and a third I still need to finish!)are entertaining but also very spiritually uplifting. It makes church leaders such as Joseph Smith and Brigham Young seem so much more real. They are comparable to the Work and the Glory series except they are not a fictional family.
Dayna Janes
I enjoyed this book. There is a lot of church history mentioned. I like reading about church history.
Teresa
Oct 21, 2009 Teresa rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: members of the LDS faith, especially.
Recommended to Teresa by: My sister.
This has to do with some of my family history, which makes it all the more interesting and insightful. I love that the book contains notes on each chapter to clarify historical details and those details thrown in for the sake of the novel. I'm looking forward to reading Volume 2. Just to warn you, there may be some tears involved, but there are definitely a lot of laughs as well! I loved this book...but like I said, I may be partial to it.
Steven
Jun 27, 2009 Steven rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who might enjoy a family perspective on pioneer life in America
Recommended to Steven by: Internet search during genealogy research
I learned quite a bit about my grandmother's family and how they became members of the LDS Church. I learned about the day to day life of people in the early United States and the politics and peoples' motivations in small town frontier life from New York to Ohio to Missouri and so on, going westward. And most of all, how dedication to God and Jesus Christ really shaped my family and the Mormon Church in this country and the world.
Tiffunny
This isn't my usual genre of choice, but these are about my relatives so my family got my all hyped on them and i loved reading it. Knowing this is a real family and that it's all based on real events and real journal accounts makes its so much better. I had no idea my ancestors were so intricately involved in the beginnings of the church and it's fascinating and heart breaking to read of their trials and conversions.
Emmy
Apparently I am related to the family that this book is based on (Ezekial and Julia Johnson are my 5th Great-Grandparents). For Christmas, my mom gave all of us kids all three books in the series and copies of family history, journals, diaries and recollections of the Johnson family that she had, or had access to. These aren't books I would typically read but the familial connection makes it interesting to me.
Katrina
I am SO grateful my great aunt recommended this series to me, since they are about my ancestors whom I knew nothing about. This book is well written and well researched, and I love the fact that almost every single character was a real person. I feel like pieces of my ancestry, that make up who I am, have fallen into place. I knew so much about my paternal side, but now I feel a little more evened out...
Heather
This was good. The writing style was too fake for me. Like always saying "the babe" instead of "the baby" or "the lad" instead of "the boy". I didn't like that. But I really liked the story, especially knowing it was based on a real family. I'll definitely read volume 2 of the series. It's such a fascinating time period, and I love reading about a real family who lived at that time.
Hannah
I really loved reading this book. Especially because this book is about my ancestors! I come through Joel Johnson's(son of Ezekiel & Julia Johnson)daughter Sariah. It is a really neat book and I loved learning MORE church history as well as learning about my ancestors. This book was like Work and the Glory in some ways. I can't wait to keep reading!
Heather
This book is about my husband's ancestors so it was really wonderful to read about them and their conversions. I was so struck by the amazing faith that the early Mormon converts had and how they sacrificed everything for their faith. I really enjoyed this book and can't wait to read the next one because this one ended in a really bad spot!
Lois
I rated this pretty high, because not only did I enjoy it, but my husband is related to the family in the book. I loved the fact that the family is not fictional, but real and a relative to boot. It takes place alongside Joseph Smith and his family so you get history along with a good story. I'm planning to read Volume II soon.
Eve
Jun 23, 2008 Eve rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: lds, novels
Based on the Benjamin F. Johnson family, which is on my husband's mother's side. We have his autobiography, so reading these fictional accounts of the events surrounding Benjamin's and his family's lives are so interesting. Very well written books, emotionally believable and spiritual without being overly sappy.
Elesa Hagberg
Story about a fictional family in the mid 1800's as they learn about and are converted to the gospel. The story was mostly interesting, but the writing seemed trite and forced and a little cheesy, and I had a hard time getting through it. Couldn't bring myself to go on to the next book in the series.
Michelle Llewellyn
I LOVE this series! It's a real family, these events actually happened to characters that jump off the page and into your heart. Read this book you won't be able to put it down you'll be dying to find out what happens next and rushing out to get the next book. Yes, it's that good
KyneWynn
I liked this series (three books) -- it is well-written (compared with other LDS fiction) with characters who feel "real" -- a big plus for me. I also love the history that is part of the story. That in fact, is my favorite part. It's a pioneer story and family saga all in one.
Holli
This is a historical-fiction church history book. The main characters are my ancestors. It's very interesting to read about their lives, what a wonderful mother they had, such a close family. I enjoy learning about the early church and the events that took place. It's a good read.
Lynne
We discussed this book in my ward book club. One of the ladies in our group is friends with the athors who are sisters. It was a good read about early Mormon church history and frontier life. This is a series and it will be interesting to follow the family through additional struggles.
Shannon
Not too cheesy historical series about lesser-known people in the early history of the Mormon church. It's based on some of their family members and journals and is decently written, but it also has a lot of supposition. I'm not certain how much I agree with some of it.
Lindsay
This book is about my ancestors. ( I come through B.F. Johnson in the book). This book made it easy for me to learn more about my ancestors since it was intestering. Any Latter Day Saint would enjoy this book very much. It made me more grateful for all that they did.
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Other Books in the Series

A Banner is Unfurled (5 books)
  • Be Still My Soul (A Banner is Unfurled, #2)
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Be Still My Soul (A Banner is Unfurled, #2) Glory From on High (A Banner is Unfurled, #3) Abide With Me (A Banner is Unfurled, #4) No Greater Love (A Banner is Unfurled, #5) Fixed stars: a novel

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