Tennis Shoes Adventure Series

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The Tennis Shoes Adventure Series is a series of LDS fiction novels written by Chris Heimerdinger. They are most widely read by young adult members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.


There are thirteen books in the series so far, with the fourteenth anticipated to be released in the near future:

  1. Tennis Shoes among the Nephites (1989)
  2. Gadiantons and the Silver Sword (1991)
  3. The Feathered Serpent, Part One (1995)
  4. The Feathered Serpent, Part Two (1996)
  5. The Sacred Quest (formerly Tennis Shoes and the Seven Churches) (1997)
  6. The Lost Scrolls (1998)
  7. The Golden Crown (1999)
  8. Warriors of Cumorah (2001)
  9. Tower of Thunder (2003)
  10. Kingdoms and Conquerors (2005)
  11. Sorcerers and Seers (2010)
  12. Drums of Desolation (2014)
  13. Thorns of Glory: Part 1 (2020)
  14. Thorns of Glory: Part 2 (TBD)

General synopses[edit]

The main characters of the series are Jim Hawkins, his sister Jenny Hawkins and Garth Plimpton, and later, their family members and friends. The novels involve people from modern times being transported to the past (at various times and locations described in the Standard Works) by means of a cave in Wyoming called "Frost Cave" (a real cave on the Spirit Mountain in Cody, Wyoming) in the United States. They feature both Book of Mormon and Bible themes.

The first four books feature Jim Hawkins as the main character: first as a teenager, then as a young man in college, and in the third and fourth as a father of three children.

  • In book 1, Jim, his friend, Garth, and his younger sister, Jennifer, discover a time passage and spend two months in the time of the Nephites, at the time of Helaman and Captain Teancum around 67 B.C.
  • In book 2 (Gadiantons and the Silver Sword), a few inhabitants of Book of Mormon times travel to the present day in search of an evil sword, the Sword of Coriantimur, an infamous sword that continuously pops up in the lives of the family, throughout many of the books. It ends with Jim destroying it, in modern times.
  • Books 3 and 4 are two parts of the same story, when Jim Hawkins’ 16-year-old daughter, Melody, is kidnapped and Jim takes his other two children, Steffanie and Harry, with him to early first-century Book of Mormon times to rescue her. They are caught in the maelstrom of the Savior's death, while in the Americas and are there to witness Jesus Christ's coming to the people of the Americas after his resurrection. These are also the first books in the series to be written in somebody besides Jim's point of view. The 3rd and 4th books are written in dual person, about half in Jim's point of view and the rest in Melody's point of view.
  • Books 5–7 are another multi-part story, in which many members of Jim Hawkins' now-large family visit the land of Israel in late first-century Biblical times.
  • Book 5 (The Sacred Quest) starts with Harry setting off with his step sister-to-be, Meagan, to Ancient Roman times to find Marcos, Melody's true love, and bring him back to her. They find and save the only existing copy of the Book of Matthew.
  • Book 6 (The Lost Scrolls) has Harry and Meagan finding more "Lost Scrolls" and saving them from the evil sorcerer, Simon Magus, who wants to destroy the sacred books.
  • Book 7 (The Golden Crown) Harry gets stranded on a Greek island in 73 A.D., with Micah, but get off with the help of a fisherman. While Harry and Gidgiddonihah are trying to save Jesse and Mary from Epigonus, an evil Greek councilman, Gid is killed. Meagan and Garth take Apollus to the present day, and come back with Jim, Sabrina, and Steffanie to find Harry and meet John the Beloved and Mary, the mother of Jesus. They all go home.
  • Books 8, 9, 10, 11 and 12 involve fourth-century Nephite settings, and book 9 (Tower of Thunder), the early-Biblical time of Abraham and Noah (close to 3000 B.C.)
  • Book 8 (Warriors of Cumorah) starts with Todd Finlay, a man who tried to kill Jim and Garth back in book 2, kidnapping Josh and Becky, to use as leverage. Apollus, Meagan, Ryan, Mary, and eventually, Becky, dash through the caves after Todd and Josh. Apollus, Ryan, and Meagan get sent close to end of the world of the Nephites. Mary, Josh, and Becky get sent to Israel in 1841. It ends with Harry, fresh off his mission. Harry, Marcos, Garth, and Jim all set out to find everyone else. Jim goes back to protect Sabrina, Melody, Jenny, and the little kids, while, Marcos and Garth go to the same era as Apollus, Meagan and Ryan. Harry, as he's about to go by himself, meets up with his sister, Steffanie, and they go to Ancient Biblical times to find everyone.
  • Book 9 (Tower of Thunder) Mary, Rebecca, and Joshua find themselves in the time of the Tower of Babel. They find the baby Abram, whom evil King Nimrod is trying to kill. They also carry the sword of Akish, and Joshua becomes attached to it. They safely deliver Abram to Melchezedik in Salem, and meet Noah. Harry and Steffanie are captured by Prince Mardon and considered angels from the city of Enoch. Harry manages to escape and changes time by saving the life of Gidgiddonihah. He brings back Gidgiddonihah, Micah, and Jesse to save Steffanie. They witness the destruction of the tower and find Mary and Pagag, the son of Mahonri Moriancumr, who has strong feelings for Mary. Joshua has run off with the sword of Akish, and Rebecca has gone after him. They appear to see Rebecca struck down by the swords power, and Akish use the sword to cut a hole in time which he takes Joshua and himself through. Rebecca is brought back to life through priesthood power.
  • Book 10 (Kingdoms and Conquers) Meagan, Apollus, Ryan, and their Nephite companions travel towards Cumorah. They are betrayed by Lamanai and Tz'ikin's father. Harry, Mary, Steffanie, Pagag, Rebecca, Gidgiddonihah, Micah, and Jesse arrive in the same time period as the others. They are attacked and Harry, Mary, Becky, Gid, Micah, and Jesse are taken prisoner by Wolf Witches. Steffanie and Pagag are left to find them. The Wolf Witches and Tz'ikin's tribe make Apollus and Gid fight to the death wearing costumes, so they don't know they are fighting each other. Harry and Mary stop the fight, and they both get out alive. Jim and Jenny are in Jerusalem during the life of the Savior. Joshua is a captain of the Nephite army. He is given a special job from Mormon to move the Golden Plates. His dad and Marcos accompany him.
  • Book 11 (Sorcerers and Seers) Joshua, Marcos, and his father are attacked by Akish. Akish steals the Gold Plates, and Joshua pursues him with Marcos. They meet Akish's wife and her family, who are fighting against Akish. The people must flee and Joshua and Hamira (Akish's daughter) are separated from the rest of the group. Hamira paints a mural above a cave, which is the same mural found by Garth in book one. The other group are attacked by Gadianton Ghosts and Micah is killed. Jesse and Pagag are on also on the verge of death. Meagan is blinded by an acid powder. They finally arrive at Cumorah, and are reunited with Garth. Jesse and Pagag recover and Steffanie confesses her love to Pagag. The Gadianton Ghosts return and try to finish Meagan. Ryan manages to save her, but travels through time with the Gadianton. He ends up home in the Salt Lake Valley. Pagag is also transported with a Gadianton back to his homeland. He vows to return to find Steffanie. Jenny and Jim stay with the Savior's family. Jim sees his son, Gid in Jerusalem. He inadvertently gives Judas Iscariot the idea to the betray the Savior. He meets Hamira, who says that Joshua is in trouble and that someone has his wife and baby Gid.
  • Book 12 (Drums of Desolation) At the precipice of battle, on the brink of extinction, upon the slopes of Cumorah. Our characters stand ready to take part in one of the most intense, and harrowing contests in all of Book of Mormon history. Surrounded by more than a million Lamanites and Gadianton robbers, Joshua, Harry, Apollus, Meagan, Garth, Steffanie, and many other favorite Tennis Shoes characters brace themselves with the Nephite nation for the promised day of violence and thunder. For four long years, the prophet Mormon has guided his people into making the Hill Cumorah an impregnable fortress against any adversary, but conflict and corruption among the Nephites threatens to undermine all of Mormon's efforts and make everyone including our characters vulnerable for disaster. Drums of Desolation serves as a sequel not only for Tennis Shoes Adventure Series Book 11 Sorcerers and Seers, but also for Passage to Zarahemla and Escape from Zarahemla, combining characters and struggles from both of Chris Heimerdinger's epic series of Book of Mormon adventures.
  • Books 13, 14 involve both fourth-century Nephite settings, and first century Judean settings.
  • Book 13 (Thorns of Glory, part 1) One hill is a place of indescribable suffering and pain, ascending to ultimate triumph and salvation. The other presents a scene of indescribable suffering and pain spiraling into ultimate destruction and genocide. The story is about all the characters from the Tennis Shoes Adventure Series Joshua, Harry, Steffanie, Meagan, Gidgiddonihah, and more as they witness, endure, and transcend two of the most dramatic events in world history: the everlasting sacrifice of our Lord and Savior upon the Mount of Olives and the unwavering consequences of apostasy upon the thousand-year-old Nephite nation at a hill called Cumorah.
  • Book 14 (Thorns of Glory, part 2) Coming 2022




* People from LDS Church standard works who appear in the series.
† Characters based on other historical records.

Thorns of Glory and Zarahemla books[edit]

In an interview included in The Passage to Zarahemla DVD, Heimerdinger said that volume 11 would likely be published in 2009 and would be called Thorns of Glory.[2][3]

In an announcement published on his official blog on November 22, 2009, however, Heimerdinger said that because of the complexities involved with the book he is currently writing, there will likely be two more volumes in the current adventure. Heimerdinger said that tentative plans are for book 11 (Sorcerers and Seers) to be published in early fall in 2010, with volume 12 (more appropriately named Thorns of Glory) to be published 6–12 months after book 11.[4]

Later in his official blog, Heimerdinger said that he had submitted the draft to his publisher, and he didn't know how far into the editing process they are. He did say, however, that "as of now the publisher's plan is to release the book this fall — September, if I understood them correctly. Things can change, but as of now, that's the intent."[5]

In even later blog posts, Heimerdinger stated that the story had gotten even more complex and would culminate in combining the Tennis Shoes Adventure Series with his Passage to Zarahemla series. The volume uniting the two series was Passage's sequel, Escape From Zarahemla. Future Heimernovels will serve as sequels to both series.[6]

In 2013, Heimerdinger posted that "For months I've told fans that the new Tennis Shoes book would be called Thorns of Glory. Most know that this book is long enough that my publisher will likely divide it into two books. I've presumed it would be Thorns of Glory Part 1 and Thorns of Glory Part 2, sort of like the Feathered Serpent books. HOWEVER, I think I've come up with a better title for the first of these 2 books: Drums of Desolation. Let me know what you think. Just know that Book 13 is likely still called Thorns of Glory."[7]

Subsequent posts confirmed that Drums of Desolation would indeed be the title of the next book. It was released on October 1, 2014, though an option to pre-order from Heimerdinger himself was immediately available.[8][9]

There was a period of 6 years between Book 12, and Book 13. In a podcast Chris says he hadn't started writing the Book 14 yet but that he wants to release it much faster. [10]


  1. ^ "And it came to pass that they chose even the firstborn of the brother of Jared; and his name was Pagag. And it came to pass that he refused and would not be their king." —Ether 6:25
  2. ^ Passage to Zarahemla Update. Passage to Zarahemla Blog. 30 September 2008.
  3. ^ Million-dollar LDS film comes to Laie "Passage to Zarahemla" makes Hawaii debut. Ke Alakai - BYU-Hawaii Student News Lab. 15 Jan 2008.
  4. ^ Frost Cave: Tennis Shoes Bombshell, Frost Cave Blog. November 22, 2009.
  5. ^ Frost Cave: Sorcerers and Seers Delivered to Publisher, Frost Cave Blog Post, May 26, 2010. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  6. ^ Frost Cave: Next Tennis Shoes Book, Frost Cave Blog Post, 2 August 2011. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  7. ^ Frost Cave: Favorite Tennis Shoes Excerpt So Far, Frost Cave Blog Post, 15 October 2013. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  8. ^ Frost Cave: Tennis Shoes Update--Compromise Averted, Frost Cave Blog Post, 20 May 2014. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  9. ^ Frost Cave: Pre-Order Tennis Shoes Book 12 Drums of Desolation, Frost Cave Blog Post, 15 July 2014. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  10. ^ Podcast Episode 54, ForeverLDS Podcast Episode 54, 9 October 2020. Retrieved 17 November 2020
  • Heimerdinger, Chris (1989), Tennis Shoes among the Nephites, American Fork, Utah: Covenant Communications, Incorporated, ISBN 978-1-57734-467-4.

External links[edit]