We are excited to announce our first ever husband and wife signing event! Paula Harline, author of The Polygamous Wives Writing Club: From the Diaries of Mormon Pioneer Women (published by Oxford University Press) and Craig Harline, author of Way Below the Angels: The Pretty Clearly Troubled but Not Even Close to Tragic Confessions of a Real Live Mormon Missionary (published by Eerdmans) will be here on Tuesday, September 30th to sign and discuss their books. They will be here from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., speaking at 6:00, and will answer questions and sign books before and after that time. We hope you will be able to make that night but, if not, we can mail a signed copy or hold one here at the store for pick-up. To RSVP on Facebook, click here.
The Polygamous Wives Writing Club: From the Diaries of Mormon Pioneer Women
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints renounced the practice of plural marriage in 1890. In the mid to late nineteenth century, however—the apex of Mormon polygamy—an average of three out of every ten Mormon women became polygamous wives. Paula Kelly Harline delves deep into the diaries and autobiographies of twenty-nine such women (all women who lived outside the spotlight), opening a rare window into the lives they led and revealing their views of and experiences with polygamy, including their well-founded belief that their domestic contributions would help to build a foundation for generations of future Mormons. Following two or three women simultaneously and integrating their own words within a lively narrative, Harline focuses on the detail of their emotional and domestic lives over time, painting an incredibly candid and realistic picture of 19th Century polygamy.
“Paula Harline’s treatment is a revealing if painful look into the profoundly rooted contradictions of Mormon plural marriage: she shows it to be a practice wives publicly defended while privately lamenting; one that fostered solidarity with a sisterhood burdened with ‘the principle,’ even as it fomented rivalries and sorrows within those marriages; and a practice that left a conflicting legacy of pride in the sacrifice polygamists endured, along with a persisting unease with the teachings and practices themselves.” –Terryl L. Givens, co-author of The God Who Weeps: How Mormonism Makes Sense of Life
“Harline has done a great service in bringing together these narratives linking the high spiritual aims and the excruciating realities of a practice that cut to the core of women’s lives. Harline’s clear-eyed and tempered analysis contextualizes the very personal voices of the past.” –Claudia L. Bushman, co-editor of Mormon Women Have Their Say, Essays from the Claremont Oral History Collection
Way Below the Angels: The Pretty Clearly Troubled but Not Even Close to Tragic Confessions of a Real Live Mormon Missionary
When Craig Harline set off on his two-year Mormon mission to Belgium in the 1970s, he had big dreams of doing miracles, converting the masses, and coming home a hero. What he found instead was a lot of rain and cold, one-sentence conversations with irritated people, and silly squabbles with fellow missionaries. From being kicked — literally — out of someone’s home to getting into arguments about what God really wanted from Donny Osmond, Harline faced a range of experiences that nothing, including his own missionary training, had prepared him for. He also found a wealth of friendships with fellow Mormons as well as unconverted locals and, along the way, gained insights that would shape the rest of his life.
“How could a memoir that primarily deals with religion and rejection be so flippin’ hilarious? Craig Harline’s experiences as a Mormon missionary in Belgium in the mid-1970s are ingeniously funny, but they also point to important issues — how religious people deal with apparent failure and navigate grown-up faith after childish certainties have proven inadequate.” — Jana Riess, author of Flunking Sainthood: A Year of Breaking the Sabbath, Forgetting to Pray, and Still Loving My Neighbor
“Harline tells his tale with such candor and warmth that the words spill beyond the boundaries of his own tradition. His story’s Mormon particulars will fascinate readers of various stripes, but religious readers across traditions will see themselves in this sweet — and often comical — human soul’s reach to comprehend God’s work in a broken world.” — J. Spencer Fluhman, author of “A Peculiar People”: Anti-Mormonism and the Making of Religion in Nineteenth-Century America
Paula Kelly Harline has been teaching college writing for over 20 years for the University of Idaho, Brigham Young University, and Utah Valley University. She has also worked as a freelance writer and artist.
Craig Harline is the author of Sunday: A History of the First Day from Babylonia to the Super Bowl and Conversions: Two Family Stories from the Reformation and Modern America, which was named one of 2011’s Top Ten Books in Religion by Publishers Weekly. He teaches European history at Brigham Young University.
The Polygamous Wives Writing Club: From the Diaries of Mormon Pioneer Women by Paula Kelly Harline. Oxford University Press, 2014. 244pp. Hardback. $29.95
Way Below the Angels: The Pretty Clearly Troubled but Not Even Close to Tragic Confessions of a Real Live Mormon Missionary by Craig Harline. Eerdmans, 2014. 281pp. Hardback. $22.00
also by Craig Harline: Sunday: A History of the First Day from Babylonia to the Super Bowl. Yale University Press, 2011. 480pp. Paperback. $24.00
Conversions: Two Family Stories from the Reformation and Modern America. Yale University Press, 2011. 320pp. Paperback–$25.00/Hardback—$30.00
Shipping: $4.50 for the first book, $1 for each additional. Priority/FedEx/UPS options available–inquire for details.
Utah residents–add 7.05% sales tax