As 1862 dawned, the American republic was at death’s door. The government appeared overwhelmed, the U.S. Treasury was broke, and the Union’s top general was gravely ill. The Confederacy --- with its booming economy and commanding position on the battlefield --- had a clear view to vicory. The survival of the country depended on the judgment and resilience of the unschooled frontier lawyer who had recently been elected president.
Twelve months later, the Civil War had become a cataclysm but the tide had turned. The Union generals who would win the war had emerged, while the Confederate Army had suffered the key losses that would lead to its doom. The blueprint of modern America had been indelibly inked, and Abraham Lincoln --- the man who brought the nation through its darkest hour --- had been forged into a singular leader. In RISE TO GREATNESS, acclaimed author David Von Drehle has created both a deeply human portrait of America’s greatest president and a dramatic narrative about our most fateful year.