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The war is over, and the Thomas family is slowly coming back together at home in Salt Lake City. But that doesn't mean all is well in Zion. In As Long As I Have You, the final volume of the Children of the Promise series, author Dean Hughes presents a moving picture of what life was like for an ordinary LDS family at the end of World War II. The war is over, and the Thomas family is slowly coming back together at home in Salt Lake City. But that doesn't mean all is well in Zion. In As Long As I Have You, the final volume of the Children of the Promise series, author Dean Hughes presents a moving picture of what life was like for an ordinary LDS family at the end of World War II.


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The war is over, and the Thomas family is slowly coming back together at home in Salt Lake City. But that doesn't mean all is well in Zion. In As Long As I Have You, the final volume of the Children of the Promise series, author Dean Hughes presents a moving picture of what life was like for an ordinary LDS family at the end of World War II. The war is over, and the Thomas family is slowly coming back together at home in Salt Lake City. But that doesn't mean all is well in Zion. In As Long As I Have You, the final volume of the Children of the Promise series, author Dean Hughes presents a moving picture of what life was like for an ordinary LDS family at the end of World War II.

30 review for As Long As I Have You

  1. 5 out of 5

    Bonnie

    Dean Hughes has managed to make the Thomas family and all they interacted with seem real to me. I think he put it best in his afterward. "..I will miss the Thomases. I know that they only exist when I put words in their mouths or invent their actions, but it doesn't seem so to me. They seem like friends, or family, with all the complexities of real human beings." Not only did he make the characters "real" to me, but I feel like I have been on the battlefield with Alex, in a prison camp with Wall Dean Hughes has managed to make the Thomas family and all they interacted with seem real to me. I think he put it best in his afterward. "..I will miss the Thomases. I know that they only exist when I put words in their mouths or invent their actions, but it doesn't seem so to me. They seem like friends, or family, with all the complexities of real human beings." Not only did he make the characters "real" to me, but I feel like I have been on the battlefield with Alex, in a prison camp with Wally, in Hawaii with Bobbie, in Germany with the Stoltzes. This is such an excellent series, and I highly recommend it to LDS readers in particular. So glad to know that he has another series based on the sixties which revolves around the grandchildren of Bea and Al Thomas. Guess I know what series I'll be reading next!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Jeannie

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. It's been a while since I read this series. I LOVED the series! But if I remember right, the last book was a little bit of a drag after Wally gets home. The suspense and hope are pretty much gone and it's back to the daily grind of normal everyday life. It was interesting to better understand the post-traumatic stresses and how it must have felt to come back and try to live "normally" again. It's been a while since I read this series. I LOVED the series! But if I remember right, the last book was a little bit of a drag after Wally gets home. The suspense and hope are pretty much gone and it's back to the daily grind of normal everyday life. It was interesting to better understand the post-traumatic stresses and how it must have felt to come back and try to live "normally" again.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Alexis

    I can't help but feel some sadness as I finish this series. I've grown to love these characters immensely and saying goodbye to them at this point in their lives was difficult. A great book should make you feel things and touch you deeply. This novel/series did just that. Overall- very well done. I loved it! I can't help but feel some sadness as I finish this series. I've grown to love these characters immensely and saying goodbye to them at this point in their lives was difficult. A great book should make you feel things and touch you deeply. This novel/series did just that. Overall- very well done. I loved it!

  4. 5 out of 5

    Jillian

    This was a really good read and I flew through it. Like, less than 5 days. And for a mom of young children, that's booking it! Answers were found for most everything and there were some surprises. I was unsatisfied with some of the character's endings and I hoped to learn more about what LaRue and Beverly would end up doing in life, but all in all, it was good. The ending could've been stronger, which is why I didn't give it 5 stars. This was a really good read and I flew through it. Like, less than 5 days. And for a mom of young children, that's booking it! Answers were found for most everything and there were some surprises. I was unsatisfied with some of the character's endings and I hoped to learn more about what LaRue and Beverly would end up doing in life, but all in all, it was good. The ending could've been stronger, which is why I didn't give it 5 stars.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Sunny Welker

    This was my second time reading the series. It's nice to visit old friends. The five novels weave an interesting fiction with the harsh non-fiction of World War II. Easy and interesting. Glad to experience them again. This was my second time reading the series. It's nice to visit old friends. The five novels weave an interesting fiction with the harsh non-fiction of World War II. Easy and interesting. Glad to experience them again.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Kathleen

    Forget ourselves. The more we look inside the worse things seem. Concentrate on others suffering and we won't have time to think about ourselves. When we do that, God heals us. There is no way we can know all the things that the Lord has in store for us. Prepare ourselves the best way we know how, and work hard at whatever we do; be the best we can, give the best we can. If we do something well, someone will come along and give us another opportunity. When an opportunity comes, pray about it. Wh Forget ourselves. The more we look inside the worse things seem. Concentrate on others suffering and we won't have time to think about ourselves. When we do that, God heals us. There is no way we can know all the things that the Lord has in store for us. Prepare ourselves the best way we know how, and work hard at whatever we do; be the best we can, give the best we can. If we do something well, someone will come along and give us another opportunity. When an opportunity comes, pray about it. Whatever we do, work at it like it's our life's ambition; don't just put in our time. Be united. Be prayerful. Love one another. Remember God in everything we do and seek His counsel and guidance. We must remember not to expect too much of others, especially those who are going through rough times. War must break Heavenly Father's heart. How can He stand to watch what we do to each other...... When we stop hating, we find understanding --- and then we can forgive. We need to experience some of the pain of this world in order to appreciate the good.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Brenda

    I just finished this series and so I am reviewing them as a whole. I loved them! I really appreciate it when an author takes the time to do research, include it correctly - in detail - in their books and then even give references at the end. I thought the characters had depth and it was interesting to "see" them change over time. But what I really loved about this series is the appreciation it gave me for those who not only fought in WWII but in all wars. I don't believe I could ever understand I just finished this series and so I am reviewing them as a whole. I loved them! I really appreciate it when an author takes the time to do research, include it correctly - in detail - in their books and then even give references at the end. I thought the characters had depth and it was interesting to "see" them change over time. But what I really loved about this series is the appreciation it gave me for those who not only fought in WWII but in all wars. I don't believe I could ever understand the horrors of war and the consequences to one's own psyche because of war and I am so grateful for anybody that had to endure for the sake of freedom.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Karen Bourne

    I really enjoyed this whole series. This book, being the last, was my quickest read. I'm a decent reader, but I don't consider myself a very fast reader. I couldn't put this book down and finished it a lot quicker than I expected to (still may not be fast in the eyes of "speed readers"). I love that the history is as accurate as possible. Dean Hughes is very thorough with his research and it made me feel as if I was really there, or if I knew exactly what the WWII era was really like. I would hi I really enjoyed this whole series. This book, being the last, was my quickest read. I'm a decent reader, but I don't consider myself a very fast reader. I couldn't put this book down and finished it a lot quicker than I expected to (still may not be fast in the eyes of "speed readers"). I love that the history is as accurate as possible. Dean Hughes is very thorough with his research and it made me feel as if I was really there, or if I knew exactly what the WWII era was really like. I would highly recommend this series to anyone. It's a great historical fiction.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Jaclyn

    Al Thomas drives me nuts. So does LaRue. And sometimes Bobbi. And yet, some of the other characters have me wrapped up in knots and I just may end up reading some of the next series because I want so much to find out what happens to them... Peter, Wally, Alex... hmmmm. I'm really torn. Again, I enjoyed the historical perspective but some of the characters and writing style really took away from my enjoyment. I seemed to have a love/hate relationship with this series. Glad I finally finished... w Al Thomas drives me nuts. So does LaRue. And sometimes Bobbi. And yet, some of the other characters have me wrapped up in knots and I just may end up reading some of the next series because I want so much to find out what happens to them... Peter, Wally, Alex... hmmmm. I'm really torn. Again, I enjoyed the historical perspective but some of the characters and writing style really took away from my enjoyment. I seemed to have a love/hate relationship with this series. Glad I finally finished... will have to see if I give series #2 a try.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Carri

    Although I only read this book to finish the series, I ended up liking it best. This book is about the lives of the Thomas family as they returned from war and tried to put their lives back together. So many books about the war years end when the war ends. This book continued through the aftermath of WW II and showed how the tragedy of war continues to effect all people after treaties are signed and soldier are brought home.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Holly

    This was probably the hardest book to make it through, although I am not sure why. It was most likely because I felt like it was never going to be a good enough ending for me. Surprisingly, I liked how the author spent a lot of time talking about adjusting to life after a war. It isn't something you hear about often. This was probably the hardest book to make it through, although I am not sure why. It was most likely because I felt like it was never going to be a good enough ending for me. Surprisingly, I liked how the author spent a lot of time talking about adjusting to life after a war. It isn't something you hear about often.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Christy

    I loved the whole series! I learned so much about the time & a bit how it would have been like to live back then. My heart was with the characters the whole time. I couldn't put the last book down, I wanted to see how things panned out but then it was hard to see it end. I'll definitely read the next series that spins off this one really soon. I loved the whole series! I learned so much about the time & a bit how it would have been like to live back then. My heart was with the characters the whole time. I couldn't put the last book down, I wanted to see how things panned out but then it was hard to see it end. I'll definitely read the next series that spins off this one really soon.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Cajsa

    I don't read many books from LDS authors, it's just not my thing, but I LOVED this series. It was very interesting historically as well as feeling like the family actually existed. A great read. I don't read many books from LDS authors, it's just not my thing, but I LOVED this series. It was very interesting historically as well as feeling like the family actually existed. A great read.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Jenn

    Good ending to the series. A little unbelievable that everyone got what they wanted.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Jennie

    One of my favorite books of all time. My favorite book out of the entire series.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Charly Troff (ReaderTurnedWriter)

    I have to admit, when I found out the fifth book took place after the war had ended, I wasn't sure about that. I thought that Hughes should have made the final book longer and just wrapped things up that way. But now that I've read this final book, I understand why (and am glad) he wrote this entire book. One thing that was really important as a reader to understand was that the war wasn't over for anyone who went home. They brought a lot back with them and they really had to fight to get throug I have to admit, when I found out the fifth book took place after the war had ended, I wasn't sure about that. I thought that Hughes should have made the final book longer and just wrapped things up that way. But now that I've read this final book, I understand why (and am glad) he wrote this entire book. One thing that was really important as a reader to understand was that the war wasn't over for anyone who went home. They brought a lot back with them and they really had to fight to get through that and live a normal life again. The war was to horrible to simply walk away from, it left it's mark. I also loved the ending. It was so fitting and so beautiful, it brought tears to my eyes. I don't think I can ever see the world again, reading this series has changed me and the way I think about things (for the better, I believe).

  17. 5 out of 5

    Kristine

    I really liked this whole series. I was surprised at how much I was drawn into the story of the Thomas Family. I learned several things just from reading these books. * More detail about the different fronts and battles during WW ll * How society has both changed and remained the same. * How women's roles in Latter-day households has definitely changed. * How petty "we" can be in wanting things the way we think we should be. * How close the General Authorities were to Stake Presidents back then. * How I really liked this whole series. I was surprised at how much I was drawn into the story of the Thomas Family. I learned several things just from reading these books. * More detail about the different fronts and battles during WW ll * How society has both changed and remained the same. * How women's roles in Latter-day households has definitely changed. * How petty "we" can be in wanting things the way we think we should be. * How close the General Authorities were to Stake Presidents back then. * How the Church has grown and changed in the Salt Lake Valley. * How cruel some people can be. * How opinionated and narrow-minded the common thought-processes were back then. * How in some ways, I am like one of the characters and what I can do to change.

  18. 4 out of 5

    livvy.jane33

    I'm just sitting here thinking: what the heck am I supposed to read next? I never thought this moment would happen-- I didn't want it to happen. But alas, the day is come, and I have no idea what to read next. The war is such a more real thing to me now. While I have always loved this time period since I was a child, I guess I never really fully understood what they went through. I feel so grateful that America got through those awful years, and the sacrifice the soldiers gave- and for the lesso I'm just sitting here thinking: what the heck am I supposed to read next? I never thought this moment would happen-- I didn't want it to happen. But alas, the day is come, and I have no idea what to read next. The war is such a more real thing to me now. While I have always loved this time period since I was a child, I guess I never really fully understood what they went through. I feel so grateful that America got through those awful years, and the sacrifice the soldiers gave- and for the lessons the world learned about what comes from violence and hate. My life will never be the same again. Now I have to go find a new series to read...😒

  19. 5 out of 5

    Heather

    I'm sad this series of books is over. I have loved learning from the Thomas Family and their experiences during World War II from all across the world and from many difference perspectives. This last book told the stories of family coming back together after the war ended. I appreciated the importance of this book. The story doesn't end when the war ends, and many of the difficulties continued or ever began after it was over. The war changed individuals and the world. It wasn't as easy to come h I'm sad this series of books is over. I have loved learning from the Thomas Family and their experiences during World War II from all across the world and from many difference perspectives. This last book told the stories of family coming back together after the war ended. I appreciated the importance of this book. The story doesn't end when the war ends, and many of the difficulties continued or ever began after it was over. The war changed individuals and the world. It wasn't as easy to come home as many of them expected and I think these perspectives are important to understand and can be inspiring for us was we strive to handle trials in our own lives. There are many miracles, and lots of love, gratitude, healing, heartache, patience, and growing in this book. The sweet relationships are an example of the importance of family. I love that in each of the books there many of the important cultural issues of the day are discussed, even beyond the differences in nationalities and countries and places. There are interesting discussions about women's roles, marriage relationships, teaching children, economics, and politics. The main message of the series seems to be remembering the role of "children of the promise" to stand up for right and make the world a better place. I think that a clear message from the book is that an important way to make the world a better place is to raise a strong family, to pray and trust in the Lord, and to be yourself and let that example shine to the world. Here are a few of my favorite quotes: "'Right now my only skill is shoveling coal.'...He had gained a lot of confidence among the prisoners, had learned how to survive--but now he was facing a world he could hardly remember" (p. 8). "Good and evil are in all of us--and sometimes the evil is only held back by a thin thread. Still, it's that thread that makes all the difference" (p. 32). "After seeing Tokyo her disgust had turned toward the war itself....she was alarmed that humans were capable of such things. She knew all the arguments for the bombing, even believed them, but it didn't change how she felt. She told God she was sorry. She didn't know whether she had the right, but she apologized for all God's children, for everything they had done, and she wished that everyone in the world would feel the same way" (p. 34). "'When the march started, I knew I didn't have the strength to do what I had to do, just to stay alive, so that's when I started to ask the Lord for help'" (p. 76). "'You have my trust, Son. But you didn't have to earn my love. It should have come without any strings attached. I regret that I didn't show you that'" (p. 77). "'I guess I'm the only one who didn't pray for this marriage to happen...I didn't dare. I thought it was too much to ask for. It's lucky the rest of you had more faith than I did'" (p. 162). "'The Lord did something for me right after the war ended...One day, just when I could have been full of anger, I felt the Lord reach inside me and pull out all the hatred and resentment. I don't know why I received that gift because a lot of men will never get over those feelings. But I don't feel any hatred toward anyone, and that's what I'm most thankful for today'" (p. 164). "'Forget yourself. The more you look inside, the worse things seem. Concentrate on your suffering brothers and sisters, do all you can to help them, and you won't have time to think about yourself. you do that and God will heal you. It might not happen over night, but it will happen'" (p. 213). "'A few months ago I got up every morning and thanked the Lord for my toothbrush, and now I'm already worrying about things that don't matter. I need to spend more time thanking the Lord for what I have--and not worrying about the rest'" (p. 247). "'Thanks for not giving up on me.' 'Alex, you know me better than that. I never will. And God won't either. He knows your heart. He knows what you tried to do.' 'The war must haven broken God's heart, Anna. How could he stand to watch what we did to each other'" (p. 414)? "'I want you kids to do good things with your lives. I want you to be righteous. And I don't know how to make that happen.' 'You've already done what you can, Dad. Now you just have to wait and see how it all turns out'" (p. 424). "'A lot of young men gave their lives for the rest of us. And we must never cease to honor them. They are the heroes. We are their benefactors. I feel like we have to live worthy of them and their sacrifice. I want to spend every day of my life making this country, this world, a better place to live. I can't do much. I'm not an important man. But all of us together--we can do plenty'" (p. 428). "'I think the greatest heroes are people who love their neighbors. That's something I don't think we should forget even during a war, and certainly not after one'" (p. 431). "'We must stand for the granite and bronze virtues of these pioneers'" (p. 455). "'You girls have brought me more joy than I ever expected to have again in this life. I feel as close to you, Anna and Lorraine, as I do to my own daughters. And you're both so good for my sons. I watch the way you're healing them--I see them coming back to themselves--and I wonder what might have happened to them if you hadn't been the ones they had chosen'" (p. 456). "'Bea, we've been blessed....We're going to be fine...The next generation is going to do all right'" (p. 465).

  20. 5 out of 5

    Brooklynn Rose

    The beginning section was really good and built up a lot of emotional events so much so that I thought I would like this book even better than the first, but then the middle and end were more flat and while it was still good it wasn't pulling a whole lot of reactions from me. Overall I felt like it was a very accurate depiction of post-war time and the characters were well crafted. I had the most issues with Bobby and Richard but I think that was the point. The beginning section was really good and built up a lot of emotional events so much so that I thought I would like this book even better than the first, but then the middle and end were more flat and while it was still good it wasn't pulling a whole lot of reactions from me. Overall I felt like it was a very accurate depiction of post-war time and the characters were well crafted. I had the most issues with Bobby and Richard but I think that was the point.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Susie Sharp

    I love the way Dean Hughes took the reader to actual events of World War II and gave a close up view of the horrors of war with enough detail to see why the men and women who experienced them could be haunted by them for the remainder of their lives. I loved the reunions that took place after the war and felt like the Thomas family were either good friends or family to me (or both).

  22. 4 out of 5

    Rene' Riddle

    The amount of research done to bring about these books definitely paid off. To me, the characters felt very real, and their experiences may as well have been, thanks to the painstaking efforts to make the history as accurate as possible. Wally's storyline was by far my favorite (though his father Al may be one of the most irritating characters ever written). The amount of research done to bring about these books definitely paid off. To me, the characters felt very real, and their experiences may as well have been, thanks to the painstaking efforts to make the history as accurate as possible. Wally's storyline was by far my favorite (though his father Al may be one of the most irritating characters ever written).

  23. 4 out of 5

    Tawny

    Favorite lines: 1. "Good and evil are in all of us--and sometimes the evil is only held back by a thin thread. Still, it's that thread that makes all the difference" (32). 2. "[It's hard] just to live life and love it. And not think you have to be better at it than someone else" (247). 3. "The thing about life was to learn from it" (466). Favorite lines: 1. "Good and evil are in all of us--and sometimes the evil is only held back by a thin thread. Still, it's that thread that makes all the difference" (32). 2. "[It's hard] just to live life and love it. And not think you have to be better at it than someone else" (247). 3. "The thing about life was to learn from it" (466).

  24. 4 out of 5

    Angie

    Phew...this is a long series. I was pretty skeptical starting it as I pretty much hate LDS historical fiction but, overall, I thought this was a pretty good saga. I feel like a member of the Thomas family now😂

  25. 4 out of 5

    Gena Lott

    A great finish to a wonderful series.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Erin

    I wanted to love this. Some parts were wonderful and some parts too realistic to be enjoyable. 3.5 stars

  27. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

    Qqgreat ending, felt realistic but resolved enough you didn't wish for another book. Qqgreat ending, felt realistic but resolved enough you didn't wish for another book.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Mace

    Great wrap up. I’ve read the series twice.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Carol Osborn

    Very good last of the series. I so enjoyed these books. Just finished this one.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Angela

    A wonderful ending to a wonderful series. I am grateful for a member of the church’s perspective of what World War II may have been like.

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