Three books for Easter offer nonfiction and fiction

By Emily W. Jensen, Rosemarie Howard and Jarrod Hiatt

For Mormon Times

Published: Saturday, April 16 2011 4:30 a.m. MDT

Set in Jerusalem during the last weeks of the Savior’s life, this book, by E. James Harrison, recreates the world of the wealthy members of the Sanhedrin, the highest Jewish council. Harrison takes us into their personal lives and council chambers and helps us imagine what their meetings might have been like as they plotted to kill Jesus.

In an author’s note at the beginning of the book, Harrison makes it clear that the book is another legend based on many other legends. “Although laced together with facts and details recorded in the Old and New Testaments as well as ancient historical records, (the book) springs from the imagination ...  of the author.”

The story is a well-written, easy-to-read, thoughtful examination of what it means to be a disciple of Christ and would be a great book to read and discuss as a family, especially at Easter time.

— Rosemarie Howard

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"MY REDEEMER LIVES!" edited by Richard Neitzel Holzapfel and Kent P. Jackson, Deseret Book, 151 pages, $14.99

Building and maintaining a testimony of the Savior can be a challenging thing for many people to do. The authors and editors of "My Redeemer Lives!," published by Deseret Book, hope the essays presented in the book will strengthen the conviction of its readers and add, if even only a little, to their overall testimonies of Jesus Christ.

"My Redeemer Lives!" is a collection of essays centered on the Savior and presented as speeches at two recent Easter Conferences at Brigham Young University. Each of the six addresses in the book provides  tremendous insight into the Savior’s life and presents thought-provoking subject matter.

Editors Richard Neitzel Holzapfel and Kent P. Jackson have compiled the essays of Elder John H. Groberg, an emeritus general authority; Elder Gerald N. Lund, a former member of the Second Quorum of the Seventy; Daniel L. Belnap; Robert L. Millet; Sandra Rogers; and Charles Swift for "My Redeemer Lives!"

Each author chooses a different, yet relevant, topic. Elder Groberg addresses how the Atonement can help us overcome adversity and inspire us to do better in our lives.

Elder Lund’s essay speaks of what the Atonement meant to the Savior, while Belnap relays how Christ gave us the power to become sons and daughters of God.

Millet defines what we worship; Rogers elaborates on freedom through Christ, and Swift relates stories from his ministry and provides perspective on the conditions surrounding certain miracles.

"My Redeemer Lives!" is an enjoyable book, and anyone looking to hear positive messages about the Savior will enjoy it.

— Jarrod M. Hiatt

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