Hi all!Arrington's is probably the best-known biography of Brigham Young, and he's of course a very well respected historian. For a more off-beat look at Brigham's life, here's another suggestion:
I don't expect this post to get too contoversial or anything, or to have a long shelf life.
I just finished reading Rough Stone Rolling, and found it to be a very intersesting book about Joseph Smith. I really enjoyed the effort the author made to give a framework of Joseph's family, surroundings and era to help better understand some of his actions. I also felt that the book was quite objective, coming from a believing LDS member, and did not shy away from some of the more "difficult" instances of Joseph's life (without drawing conclusions and Joseph-bashing)
I would love to find a book/books of similar caliber about Brigham Young, whith whom I am not as familiar. Does anyone know of any such works?
Brigham Young's Homes, ed. Colleen Whitley.
On the surface it's a heavily illustrated book about all the places Brigham lived, but it's also full of real-life info about Brigham and his families--and it's quite readable. From the amazon.com abstract: "The authors discuss, in addition to the buildings themselves, what went on within their walls, looking especially at the lives of Young's plural wives and their children. Their emphasis is on Young's residences as homes, not just structures." I found it interesting, but then I worked for the press at the time and worked on this book, so I'm probably a bit biased.