Lincoln and the Fight for Peace

S. & S. Audio. Feb. 2022. 11 hrs. ISBN 9781797136004. $24.99. HIST
Journalist Avlon makes a solid case for Abraham Lincoln as peacemaker in an impassioned reading of his book. Opening with a visit to troops on the front lines in 1865, Avlon uses personal anecdotes to paint this portrait of Lincoln as a man who embodied decency in politics from a position of strength. Lincoln’s humanity is a constant; he invited his sister-in-law to the White House and granted her amnesty after her husband, a Confederate general, had been recently killed at Chickamauga. An impassioned lecturer, the author uses an intense and intentional tone that varies pacing during dramatic passages (“the clock ticked toward freedom”), emphasizes words in sentences to effect (he was “pro-labor, -immigration, and -conservation”), and raises and lowers both volume and vocal pitch to keep listeners engaged. Vocal inflections for quotes within the text (the gravelly voiced “Know Nothing” speaker) are effective. He closes with continuing applications of Lincoln’s vision of peace and a reading of both Lincoln’s second inaugural address and his last speech, a call for reconciliation.
VERDICT Fans of Abraham Lincoln will see a new perspective of this great president.
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