Revered as an "elect lady" and denounced as a "damned liar," Emma Hale Smith had a full life of contradictions - trials and triumphs, sorrows and strength, fears and faith. Raised in a well-respected family, she gave up everything to marry a poor, uneducated farm boy. Her unwavering support of the Prophet Joseph through intense persecution and suffering is legendary, and although she lived in relative comfort and security in her later years, Emma's life continued to be laced with tragedy and heartache.
This well-documented narrative provides a personal glimpse into the life of a woman who remains one of the most mysterious and misunderstood women in Church history today. With beautiful full-color illustrations by renowned artist Liz Lemon Swindle, the story is told using many first-person accounts. Readers will gain valuable insights into the remarkable life and character of Emma Hale Smith.
I loved this book! Once I started reading it, I didn’t want to put it down. I thought the content and clarity of the book was superior. I was able to learn so much about Emma Smith. She was a woman full of never-ending faith, sacrifice, and diligence, which she showed to everyone around her. In the book, Lucy Mack Smith defines Emma well when she said:
I have never seen a woman in my life, who would endure every species of fatigue and, from month to month, and from year to year, with that unflinching courage, zeal, and patience, which she has done; for I know that which she has had to endure—she has been tossed upon the ocean of uncertainty—she has breasted the storms of persecution, and buffeted the rage of men and devils, which would have borne down almost any other woman.
The book gave a detailed description of the life Emma lived and the many hardships she faced. However, it also gave a great account of the many miracles she witnessed in her life. She never gave up and always trusted in the Lord. Emma has become a woman who I truly admire.
I also really enjoyed the pictures shown throughout the book. They really helped the story come alive. Nevertheless, I wished there would have been a picture of detailed maps showing the route of the destinations that the Smith family traveled to and settled at. I think the map would have helped given me a better picture of knowing where the Smiths were residing as I read.
Something else I would have liked to see would have been a greater focus on Emma. It seemed there was a lot of focus on Joseph, which is great, but I was expecting more information on Emma because the title of the book is Beloved Emma.
Overall, I strongly recommend this book. I felt very informed and I my testimony of the restoration of the gospel was strengthened. I truly enjoyed reading about the life of Emma Smith and I applaud the author, Lori Woodland, for her efforts in bringing forth such a marvelous book.
I finally found the time to read this beautiful book which I have owned since it was released. (I probably purchased it because it is beautiful:-) I couldn't put it down even though I was familiar with most of the stories. The author was able to help me see what happened through Emma's eyes. It was astonishing to see how faithful she was in spite of the many times she could have quit or felt sorry for herself. Her grief alone, so many times, would have overcome most of us. My heart is now completely bound to Emma's heart. What an amazing, faithful and enduring woman she is! And what a noble companion to the Prophet of the Restoration. Thank you, Lori Woodland, for your efforts in Emma's behalf. And thank you for adding the exquisite artwork of Liz Lemon Swindle.
I found this to be a sappy, rather shallow treatise. I think there is a lot more information out there that might not be quite as eagerly accepted but is still the truth. It is too bad the author was not brave enough to give readers that.