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In the Company of Angels

By Emily Milner

I’m almost done reading the Whitney finalists! Exclamation point because thirty books is a lot, and while I’ve enjoyed it, it will feel good to be done with the last one. Shelah and I are going to talk more about our favorites in a couple of weeks. You can also visit Shelah’s blog for her Whitney finalist reviews. Today I want to focus on one of my favorite finalists, In the Company of Angels, by David Farland. I spent the weekend crying over it, wrapping my mind around its dilemmas, feeling humbled by the sacrifice of these handcart pioneers.

Farland tells the story of the Willie Handcart company from the perspectives of Captain Willie; Eliza Gadd, a non-Mormon traveling with her Mormon husband and family; and Baline Mortensen, a young girl sent from Denmark to travel in the company without her parents.

I love the way that David Farland embraces the moral complexities inherent in Willie handcart story.

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