A literary historical novel about the relationships between the future President and the two people who knew him best: his handsome and charming confidant (and roommate) Joshua Speed and the spirited young debutante Mary Todd.
[Bayard is] extraordinarily gifted at blending provocative fiction with history ... The details of their courtship are lovely to read, but Lincoln’s time with Speed is much more riveting ... arresting, yet it never teeters toward debunking or proving anything ... Bayard offers readers no absolutes. At book’s end, who’s courting Lincoln remains an enticing mystery.
With wit and charm that only Louis Bayard can deliver, Courting Mr. Lincoln transports readers to 19th-century Springfield ... Courting Mr. Lincoln oscillates between the voices of Mary and Speed, brilliantly connecting the audience with these two individuals ... This is a love triangle capable of stealing the hearts of readers ... Bayard's masterful command of language enchants and thrills ... He offers more reasons to love one of the most admired presidents in U.S. history and proves yet again why he himself is one of the nation's greatest literary gems.
...a rich, fascinating and romantic union of fact and imagination about young Lincoln, the woman he would marry and his beloved best friend ... intimate, warm and, above all, compassionate. Bayard is concerned with the possibilities of the human heart, and he presents an enigmatic Lincoln seen — and loved — from two other points of a romantic triangle ... Bayard is the perfect writer to re-imagine Lincoln’s private life ... perhaps the greatest triumph of Courting Mr. Lincoln is how effectively Bayard creates suspense, even when we know how the story ends.