Jan says, I picked up this book because I had enjoyed Horan’s bestselling novel, Loving Frank, and never dreamed I would gain such empathy for Mary Todd Lincoln. What a hard life she had, and this book brings it home with such compassion.
The House of Lincoln tells the story of Abraham Lincoln’s ascendance from rumpled lawyer to U.S. President to Great Emancipator and presents Lincoln’s Midwestern home as a complex third home front of the Civil War.
Rich with historical detail, The House of Lincoln is an insightful account of Lincoln’s transformative vision for democracy as observed through the eyes of a young immigrant who arrives in Lincoln’s home of Springfield, Illinois from Madeira, Portugal.
Showing intelligence beyond society’s expectations, fourteen-year-old Ana Ferreira is offered a job in the Lincoln household assisting Mary Lincoln with their boys and with the hosting duties borne by the wife of a rising political star. Ana bears witness to the evolution of Lincoln’s views on equality and the Union and observes in full complexity the psyche and pain of his bold, polarizing wife, Mary. Yet, alongside her dearest friend in the Black community, Ana confronts the racial prejudice her friend encounters daily as she watches the inner workings of the Underground Railroad, and directly experiences how slavery contradicts the promise of freedom in her adopted country.
Culminating in an account of the little-known Springfield race riot of 1908, The House of Lincoln takes readers on a journey through the historic changes that reshaped America and continue to reverberate today.