This tome is about the Mormon movement from England to Nauvoo, Illinois in the 1840's. His fictional character is Dinah Kirkham and her family which is loosely based on Eliza Snow and his own great-grandmother, both of whom were wives of Joseph Smith and then Brigham Young. The story points up the extreme choices and sacrifices people made to be Mormons. It also deals with the start of the revelation for celestial marriage that caused Mormons to be viewed with such horror due to the polygamy. A person really had to want to be a Mormon and have a very strong faith to survive the persecution. Orson Scott Card views it as a crucible or test from God, not unlike Abraham. Only the true believers would remain.
It was a surprise to find that the author of Ender's Game was the author of this book. I had known that he wrote some books about Biblical characters, but I didn't know he is Mormon. It is a very interesting book and it took him a long time to get it published as a historical novel rather than being sold as a romance. Interesting, in-depth look at a group in a time period of history.