Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “For The Strength of The Hills (The Mountain Christians #1)” as Want to Read:
For The Strength of The Hills (The Mountain Christians #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

For The Strength of The Hills (The Mountain Christians #1)

4.46  ·  Rating details ·  39 Ratings  ·  20 Reviews
LDS Novel - Mountain Christians

James is only ten years old when the Mormon missionaries enter his beloved mountain homeland. A place where his family has lived since perhaps before the days of Christ and his apostles. Here they have practiced their religion free from outside interference for centuries.

How will James and his family respond to American preachers who bring news of a restored gospel to thei
Paperback, 338 pages
Published February 11th 2013 by The Piedmont Press (first published November 23rd 2012)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about For The Strength of The Hills, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about For The Strength of The Hills

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
Jan 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I was very pleasantly surprised when I read this book. I knew this was the author's first novel so I really didn't know what to expect. Also, I knew it was about Mormonism and being of no particular religion myself, I was curious to discover how the book would feel to me. Although religion was the focal point, it remained in the background for the story itself to shine, and I was perfectly comfortable with it.

I thoroughly enjoyed the book and sometimes found it hard to put down, staying up too l
Dec 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I learned about a part of history I never knew existed. It was very interesting to read about the traditions of the Waldensians in the 1800s. I'd never heard about them before now. This was a touching story about a family's love for one another and their struggle with a new religion. Very heart warming!
Feb 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-reads
Fascinating and insightful, this enriching read is astonishingly affecting and beautifully written as to enchant!

As a Christian and avid reader I was delighted to find a most surprising book, which is illuminating on religious practices and ideals as well as being spiritually uplifting. By exploring other viewpoints and perspectives on faith, including Mormonism, it ultimately broadens your mind on how others live by their beliefs. Amid the religious connotations is a well-written story which i
Apr 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I was just tickled to find this book! The story is about some Italian families that join the church in the mid-1800's. One of the families, the Cardons, are my ancestors! My entire life, I've heard about how Lorenzo Snow and 2 other missionaries came to the little mountain village that my ancestors lived in high in the French-Italian Alps and taught them the restored gospel. I vaguely remember hearing about them being part of the Waldensian "sect" and the persecution they endured from the Cathol ...more
Dec 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This book follows a ten year old boy, as he and his family are introduced to the gospel. I have read several LDS historical novels. Most of which focus around Nauvoo, or the pioneer trail.

This particular novel has a completely different setting from any of these types of books that I have read before. It takes place in a community in the Italian Alps, among a people who are called the waldensians.

I was impressed by the testimony of the missionaries who left their families to travel around the wo
The people of this Mountain community, taught that they started with the life of Christ. They taught their people, that it was their responsibility to teach others their beliefs.

This is an LDS novel, based on a real group of people. The missionaries went to the Mountains in the Alps, and were warmly welcomed, as were other visitors. They were treated well, until the people saw the missionaries were trying to get them to be baptized. Information was researched from real missionaries, who served
Jan 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Delightful book and an easy read. It’s always a bonus when I read a book to come away learning something new and this book definitely provided that. It was easy to put myself in the story alongside the main character, James, and to appreciate the challenging lifestyle he lived as a Waldensian. I came away strengthened by the faith and commitment demonstrated by James and his family as they boldly left the only lifestyle and religion they knew to join a new religion and embark on a life-changing ...more
Sawyer Barker
Jan 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing
For The Strength Of The Hills
by Hiram Bertoch

As a teen I was amazed by the attention to detail and incredible storyline that made it hard to put the book down. I loved learning so much about the other cultures and religions and how much respect the author expressed towards each and the wide spectrum of different viewpoints and perspectives that were used to describe all events. It is obvious that the author did incredible research into every subject that makes up this incredible story.
Overall an
Dan Jepson
Dec 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: mormons, history buffs
Shelves: lds-novels
This was an interesting book. Well written, and well researched. I had no idea that the waldensians even existed. Let alone the critical role that they played in the reformation.

It was interesting to read about the tight nit society that existed among them, and the sense of belonging to the group that they had.

Also interesting to read how the characters reacted to the Mormon missionaries who threatened to lead them away from that strong sense of community.

I would recommend this book. I look for
Feb 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed reading this book. I had never heard of the Waldensian people and their history. Having grandparents who came to America from Switzerland because of Mormon missionaries in the 1880's made this story more personal to me. I loved how you were drawn into the family's life and struggles to survive in the Italian Alps. I can't wait for the next book to learn how the family continued on their journey to Zion.
Dec 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing
What a wonderful story! This author draws you in with the story of Jean and his 5 children who live as Waldensians high in the mountains. I had never heard of the Waldensian people before. I found myself drawn to the history this book provides about these people. I found myself getting drawn deeper and deeper into the story, and when I got to the last page, I couldn't believe it was over! I can't wait for the next book!
Jan 23, 2013 rated it liked it
I received this book as a first reader.
This was a really quick read. I found it interesting to see how a sheltered community responded to the proselyting of mormon missionaries. I didn't think that the first chapter was necessary and perhaps could have been made a footnote of sorts to increase the ease of flow in the beginning.
It is a perfect title for the subject matter and leaves the reader waiting for a second installment to see how the family will fare.
Jon Berry
Jan 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. It was really interesting to learn about the Waldensian people. I also enjoyed following the story of James and his family and what they had to go through to live high up in those mountain valleys. Well worth the read. I definitely look forward to the next book in the series!
Jennifer Brown
This was a delightful, easy read with lots of interesting historical details I have loved learning about. I was led to it by a commercial on the radio I had been hearing for months. From the first hearing of the commercial I wondered if this was about the people my family came from in Piedmont, Italy. I have truly enjoyed it and look forward to the next book in the series.
Ali Pahl
Feb 25, 2013 rated it it was amazing
It was a wonderful story. I really enjoyed reading it and learning about my family's history. It also helped my testimony greatly because they had to go through so much that we don't have to. I also really enjoyed the small stories like when Daniel made James and his friend go through the thorns to get their shoes. It just made everything more realistic for me.
Hannah Brock
Dec 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I am 12 years old. This was a fun book for me. James is my same age. It was fun to learn about how poor he was. Winters were really cold there. And they didn't have very much food. This book made me have a stronger testimony. I hope I can have a strong testimony like James.
Cleone Lee
Jan 13, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting story

I now want to read the next book the series. I particularly enjoyed Lorenzo Snows testimony. I am interested to see what happens to the rest of the Waldensians!!!!
Jan 12, 2013 rated it liked it
Great wholesome story that was captivating and lovely.
Mackenzie Peterson
Dec 31, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is a fun read.
I enjoyed it.
Apr 08, 2013 rated it really liked it
I liked it. I really enjoy books that are about religion. I liked how it showed realistic feelings of religions. It was slightly sad at the end, but overall it was really good.
rated it liked it
Jan 13, 2018
Jeremy Love
rated it it was amazing
Jan 04, 2013
Anna Manwaring
rated it liked it
Apr 22, 2013
rated it really liked it
Apr 22, 2015
Maria Sphaler
rated it it was amazing
Feb 16, 2013
rated it it was amazing
Dec 30, 2012
rated it really liked it
Jan 04, 2013
rated it really liked it
May 28, 2016
rated it liked it
Jan 29, 2014
Faye howard
rated it really liked it
Aug 26, 2013
« previous 1 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • A Merry Little Christmas (Songs of the Season)
  • Thirty Seconds Before Midnight
  • The Lord's Prayer and God's Vision for the World: Finding your Purpose through Prayer
  • The Burden Bearer: Who’s Carrying Your Load?
  • Standing in Death's Shadow: More True Stories from a Homicide Detective
  • Vinson's Christmas: And Other Oddities
  • North Pole High: A Rebel Without a Claus
  • Alien Hunters: Discovery
  • Eternal Revelations
  • The Eighth Square
  • Are You My Friend? A Raymond and Sheila Story
  • The Fractured Road - Part 1: East and West
  • One Man's Castle
  • Lily (Seed Savers #2)
  • How To Screw Up Your Kids
  • Strangeworld (One: The Mortifera)
  • Dorked by the Rings (a diary of Middle-dirt)
  • The Winner Is Love
Hiram J. Bertoch began writing in 1998. His degrees in Biology and Earth Science, have opened the door, and allowed him to write a number of articles that have been published by textbook companies, and educational resources both online and in print.

In the early 2000’s Hiram J. Bertoch was approached by a publishing company who he had done work with in the past, and asked to write a series of educa
More about Hiram Bertoch