Review: A Generation Rising by Gerald N. Lund

Fire and Steel, Volume One: A Generation RisingA Generation Rising
(Fire and Steel #1)
by Gerald N. Lund
Historical Fiction
Hardcover, 279 Pages
November 20th 2014 by Deseret Book


The strongest steel is forged in the hottest flames. From master storyteller Gerald N. Lund comes a new blockbuster series chronicling the lives of two families who will face some of the most turbulent times in history as they are tried to their very cores. Will they be tempered and strengthened by the hammering blows, will they bend to the point of breaking, or will they completely shatter?

As volume one begins, life could not be more promising for the Eckhardts. They finally have a son, Hans, the male heir they have longed for and a child of such brilliance and promise that his success seems certain. But as youthful Hans’s ambition takes him away from his family and their small Bavarian village, the winds of unrest in Europe are about to erupt into the greatest war the world has ever known.

Kicking off a story that will cross generations—and continents—the Eckhardts must brace themselves to weather the storms and turmoil that lie ahead. Only through sheer determination and fortitude will they be able to pass through the refiner’s fire and come out stronger and more united than ever before.


My Review

A Generation Rising was a historical story full of family, hope, and heartbreaking war set in Germany before and during the First Great World War. It was interesting reading about this family and their son Hans Otto, who has a brilliant mind. Their simple life changed over the years as technology advances, as their children grow, as they are influenced by Mormon missionaries, and as war plagues their country.

The beginning of the story dragged a little for me. There was quite a bit of set-up for the story and a lot of info dumping. For those that enjoy a lot of historical facts mixed with fiction, this would be ideal. I love being immersed in the story and finding out the setting and historical facts as the characters learn or experience them and so it took me longer to get into the story. However, once Hans Otto is away at a private school I was pulled in. The story becomes more intense as Germany goes to war and foreigners, including some missionaries Hans Otto had befriended, are forced out of the country. Then Hans Otto becomes a soldier. There were so many heartbreaking things that he faces. War is so cruel and this one was devastating for Germany and played a key role in influencing WWII coming to be.

Those who enjoy historical LDS fiction, especially if you've read any of Lund's books before, would enjoy this first book of his newest series. There is much still to know about Hans Otto and his family as they live through this historic, terrible, but also hopeful time of history.

Content: There are references to war and some violence, but I would consider this clean.

Source: I recieved a complimentary copy for review from Deseret Book, the publisher, which did not affect my review in any way.

About the Author

Gerald_lundGerald N. Lund received his B.A. and M.S. degrees in sociology from BYU. He also did extensive graduate work in New Testament studies at Pepperdine University, and studied Hebrew at the University of Judaism. He is a prolific author and speaker. His novels include The Work and the Glory Series, The Kingdom and the Crown Trilogy, Fire of the Covenant, The Undaunted, and his newest series, Fire and Steel. He has also written several books on gospel topics, including a doctrinal trilogy exploring our relationship with Heavenly Father and how He expresses His love to His children.

During his thirty-five years in the Church Educational System, Gerald N. Lund served as seminary teacher, institute teacher and director, curriculum writer, director of college curriculum, and zone administrator. His church callings have included stake president, bishop, and he also served as a member of the Second Quorum of the Seventy from 2002 to 2008.

He and his late wife, Lynn, are the parents of seven children.

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