Written By: Doris Kearns Goodwin

Narrated By: Suzanne Toren

Date: March 2011

Duration: 41 hours 32 minutes


Winner of the Lincoln Prize

Acclaimed historian Doris Kearns Goodwin illuminates Abraham Lincoln's political genius in this highly original work, as the one-term congressman and prairie lawyer rises from obscurity to prevail over three gifted rivals of national reputation to become president.

On May 18, 1860, William H. Seward, Salmon P. Chase, Edward Bates, and Abraham Lincoln waited in their hometowns for the results from the Republican National Convention in Chicago. When Lincoln emerged as the victor, his rivals were dismayed and angry.

Throughout the turbulent 1850s, each had energetically sought the presidency as the conflict over slavery was leading inexorably to secession and civil war. That Lincoln succeeded, Goodwin demonstrates, was the result of a character that had been forged by experiences that raised him above his more privileged and accomplished rivals. He won because he possessed an extraordinary ability to put himself in the place of other men, to experience what they were feeling, to understand their motives and desires.

It was this capacity that enabled Lincoln as president to bring his disgruntled opponents together, create the most unusual cabinet in history, and marshal their talents to the task of preserving the Union and winning the war.

We view the long, horrifying struggle from the vantage of the White House as Lincoln copes with incompetent generals, hostile congressmen, and his raucous cabinet. He overcomes these obstacles by winning the respect of his former competitors, and in the case of Seward, finds a loyal and crucial friend to see him through.

This brilliant multiple biography is centered on Lincoln's mastery of men and how it shaped the most significant presidency in the nation's history.


  • pradeep nagaraju

    I learned a great deal about Lincoln character, his ability to manage his cabinet with the travails of many dissonent personalities, and his ability to inspire the US to take up the fight to prevent succession and spread slavery. After you understand the history, the persona of the American character at the time, and the struggles they endured then Lincolns speeches become vibrant and immortal. This book is a must for anyone interested in the lead up to the Civil war, the war itself, and interested in understanding Lincolns timeless character. The narrator was slow at first. I increased the speed on my audiobook player to 1.75X and it made it much easier to listen to and quicker to get through. Many times I waited in my car for a chapter to end before I was ready to let the book go!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • LaMarr Anderson

    Long but well worth the insights and knowledge gained. This book has really peaked my interest in gleaning more about Pres. Lincoln and this period of our history. His leadership and team orchestration skills are what this country needs now!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • Erik Peterson

    The book starts a bit slow, but by the time you reach the Chicago convention you're immersed in the lives of these men, and by the end you can often guess how each man (Chase, in particular) will react. Fantastic listen; well worth the 40 hour investment.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • Pontius Pilate

    I wouldn't want to read this again but if your in a pinch and need a history fix, this will suffice.

  • Anonymous

    Great Book, well read by the Narrator!


    There are books and then there is Lincoln 'team of rivals'.. 40 hours but each minute was worth listening.. amazing. leaves me wanting to learn of lincoln!

Team of Rivals

by Doris Kearns Goodwin

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Team of Rivals, Doris Kearns Goodwin
Team of Rivals, Doris Kearns Goodwin
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