Mormon families -- Fiction; Mormon pioneers -- Fiction;
Frontier and pioneer life -- West (U.S.) -- Fiction; United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865 -- Fiction; Utah -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865 -- Fiction
It is now 1862, and the Civil War is raging in the east. But Zion and many of its inhabitants do not escape the war. Adam Weldon, the son of the notorious outlaw Dick Weldon, is found innocent of complicity in his father's crimes. He and Laura Ould develop a mutual attraction and decide to marry, but first, Adam volunteers to drive a wagon in the Church's "down-and-back" wagon trains to bring indigent emigrants from Florence back to Zion. In Florence, Adam is asked to undertake a special mission to lead remnants of earlier Church settlements in Texas and Indian Territory to the Salt Lake Valley. Plunged into the midst of the Civil War in Indian Territory as he travels to gather the remnant Saints, Adam faces unexpected hazards as he is caught between the warring sides, and struggles to complete his mission.
Meanwhile, the withdrawal of Federal troops from Utah the year before has left the Territory exposed to rapidly escalating Indian attacks. To fill this void, the US Army sends a regiment of California Volunteers under Colonel Patrick Conner to the territory to protect the roads and telegraph, and to "keep an eye on the Mormons." Many in the Federal Government question Brigham Young's loyalty to the Union and fear he may join the Confederacy. Cyrus Wills, a Civil War veteran, is transferred to Connor's regiment. Born in Illinois near Nauvoo to a father who rode with the Carthage Greys against the Mormons, and a devout Mormon mother who died when he was young, he now finds himself amidst his mother's people and becomes deeply conflicted over the two sides of his heritage.
In Grantsville, William Jefferies and his fellow settlers continue their struggles to establish Zion in the western Utah desert. Faced with an influx of non-Mormons from remnants of nearby Camp Floyd, they find a Sodom and Gomorrah in their midst. A saloon, prostitution, and an illicit underground marriage brokerage to supply renegade polygamists confront the struggling settlement. They incorporate as a city in an effort to establish law and order, but the process brings many obstacles and challenges.
Will Adam successfully complete his special mission and return to his Laura? Will Cyrus be able to reconcile the conflict between his anti-Mormon and faithful Mormon heritage? Will Grantsville succeed in establishing a true Zion amidst the influences of Babylon? Volume Three will answer these questions. (Publisher website)