It has been said that more books have been written about Abraham Lincoln than any other historical figure except Jesus Christ. Given that Jesus was born 1800 years before Lincoln, that's saying a lot about who Lincoln is. The question then becomes, do we really need another Lincoln book? We need this one. This book follows the parallel careers of Lincoln, Salmon Chase, William Seward, and Edward Bates. The first part of the book details all of their lives. The Lincoln material was familiar, but it was fascinating to read about the others. All 4 of them were candidates for the Republican nomination in 1860. The book goes into great detail about the machinations of the convention, arguably one of the most important in US history. I started to wonder how the Civil War would have been fought if anyone besides Lincoln had won the nomination. After the election, the book focuses primarily on Lincoln, as it should. It shows Lincoln's true character in forgiving his enemies, and allowing minor incidents to go without major retribution. It also shows the others' growing realization that, whatever their previous impressions, Lincoln was the right person for the presidency at that time. It's hard to say "Spoiler alert" in a history book, since everyone knows the ending. It also focuses on Lincoln's views on slavery and emancipation, which is what Steven Spielberg focused on in his movie "Lincoln", which is based on this book. The book also details Lincoln's last day. You get the impression that if Lincoln had been president during Reconstruction, some of the acrimony that arose would have been alleviated. All in all, a great book about Lincoln. I can definitely see why Steven Spielberg chose this book to turn into a movie.