The Work and the Glory by Gerald N. Lund
When the Steed family meets the founder of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints - Joseph Smith - they have to decide for themselves whether his words are true.
The early days of the church was an interesting time. In the early 19th century a fourteen-year-old boy claimed to recieve visions from God and said he was asked to translate ancient records from Native America, and against all odds, people believed him. Converts to the church suffered intense persecution, but held strong so the Mormon church could grow to the 14 million members we have now. After hearing these stories all while growing up, I loved reading them from a convert's point of view.
Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier
Griet is a maid for the famous painter Vermeer who becomes the annonymous model of his most renowned painting.
No one knows who really posed for the painting featured on the cover; this novel gives a name to the nameless. It creates a beautiful setting with a fascinating character whose life is very different from the artistic world she becomes involved in.