Doris Kearns Goodwin's book is engaging, informative, and well-organized. I highly recommend it. The narration by Suzanne Toren is also quite good, though the sound quality leaves a little something to be desired.
More than that, however, the editing was very poorly done. In between audio clips that were pieced together for this lengthy work, there is an unnatural pause. As the new clip begins, the audio fades in - dropping the first syllable or two of the first line. At one point, Toren begins a paragraph about a member of Lincoln's cabinet (Chase, as I eventually discovered), but his name is completely inaudible. For several sentences afterwards, descriptions of events refer to "he" and "him", but as the the antecedent to these pronouns was swallowed up by the odd "fade in" effect, listeners are completely in the dark as to about whom the narrator is speaking!
There was also at least one moment where clip of about five minutes repeated itself (I think around chapter 20, in a discussion of general Grant).
It's really a shame that the enjoyment of such a good book is frustrated by shoddy editing.
Great book but the author fails to recognize Lincoln's moral fortitude. For example saying that he must have visited local prostitutes without providing any evidence. Or capitalizing on one comment from Lincoln to mean that he did not believe in God while assuming he was insincere -- in the face of dozens of statements by Ab that did assert his faith. But other than those two incidents, I thought the book was great!
As with all my purchases, this was a constant companion. I'm book monogamous, one at a time. I use audio books in the following ways; Showering & shaving, commuting, exercising, road trips. This keeps me up to date and looking forward to the next opportunity to spend a few minutes or hours with my current book of choice.
One of my absolute favorite books. Lincoln is such a towering, almost mythical figure, this book helps make him more real, while revealing the greatness attributed to him is entirely warranted. The friendship and incredible respect that Lincoln had among his cabinet members, particularly Seward and Stanton after initial jealousy or condescension is what i was most impressed by. A MUST READ for anyone interested in Lincoln, politics, or American history.
As I listened to the trials struggles and accomplishments of Lincoln, Seward, Chase, Stanton and others I felt like I was there.
How does a rural woodsman become the greatest President in our history? By combining whit, intelligence (emotional and intellectual) and strength of his convictions to overcome all obstacles.
Lincoln, of course
Expectations that a woman's voice could bring to life the lives of these men was a total surprise. Her story telling is perfect.
Yes, but not possible.
I have now read the book twice and listened to Suzanne Toren's reading of it four times (not the last).