Extended Audio Sample

Download I Am Abraham: A Novel of Lincoln and the Civil War Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample I Am Abraham: A Novel of Lincoln and the Civil War, by Jerome Charyn Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Jerome Charyn Narrator: Arthur Morey Publisher: Dreamscape Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
Regular Price: $24.99 Download
— or —
FlexPass™ Price: $12.95$5.95$5.95 for new members!
Download learn more )

Narrated in Lincoln's own voice, the tragicomic I Am Abraham promises to be the masterwork of Jerome Charyn’s remarkable career.

Since publishing his first novel in 1964, Jerome Charyn has established himself as one of the most inventive and prolific literary chroniclers of the American landscape. Here in I Am Abraham, Charyn returns with an unforgettable portrait of Lincoln and the Civil War. Narrated boldly in the first person, I Am Abraham effortlessly mixes humor with Shakespearean-like tragedy, in the process creating an achingly human portrait of our sixteenth President.

Tracing the historic arc of Lincoln’s life from his picaresque days as a gangly young lawyer in Sangamon County, Illinois, through his improbable marriage to Kentucky belle Mary Todd, to his 1865 visit to war-shattered Richmond only days before his assassination, I Am Abraham hews closely to the familiar Lincoln saga. Charyn seamlessly braids historical figures such as Mrs. Keckley—the former slave, who became the First Lady’s dressmaker and confidante—and the swaggering and almost treasonous General McClellan with a parade of fictional extras: wise-cracking knaves, conniving hangers-on, speculators, scheming Senators, and even patriotic whores.

We encounter the renegade Rebel soldiers who flanked the District in tattered uniforms and cardboard shoes, living in a no-man's-land between North and South; as well as the Northern deserters, young men all, with sunken, hollowed faces, sitting in the punishing sun, waiting for their rendezvous with the firing squad; and the black recruits, whom Lincoln's own generals wanted to discard, but who play a pivotal role in winning the Civil War. At the center of this grand pageant is always Lincoln himself, clad in a green shawl, pacing the White House halls in the darkest hours of America's bloodiest war.

Using biblically cadenced prose, cornpone nineteenth-century humor, and Lincoln’s own letters and speeches, Charyn concocts a profoundly moral but troubled commander in chief, whose relationship with his Ophelia-like wife and sons—Robert, Willie, and Tad—is explored with penetrating psychological insight and the utmost compassion. Seized by melancholy and imbued with an unfaltering sense of human worth, Charyn’s President Lincoln comes to vibrant, three-dimensional life in a haunting portrait we have rarely seen in historical fiction.

Download and start listening now!

bba2

Quotes & Awards

  • “Jerome Charyn is one of the most important writers in American literature.”

    Michael Chabon, New York Times bestselling author

  • “Jerome Charyn is merely one of our finest writers with a polymorphous imagination and crack comic timing. Whatever milieu he chooses to inhabit, his characters sizzle with life, and his sentences are pure vernacular music, his voice unmistakable.”

    Jonathan Lethem, New York Times bestselling author

  • I Am Abraham is not only the best novel about President Lincoln since Gore Vidal’s Lincoln in 1984, but it is also twice as good to read.”

    Gabor Boritt, author of The Lincoln Enigma and recipient of the National Humanities Medal

  • “The novel…succeeds in making the legendary figure more accessible, using Lincoln’s lifelong battle with depression as an avenue through which to explore his life and perspective…A warts-and-all portrayal, not only of the lead, but of central supporting figures, most especially his tempestuous and difficult wife, Mary. Charyn has managed to craft a fictional autobiography that rings emotionally true.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Charyn faces the daunting task of fictionalizing the life of an American icon, but does so with aplomb…By employing a first-person narrative, he is able to inject Lincoln’s inimitable intelligence, wit, and compassion into every page, as his homespun humor is underscored with his trademark pathos and humanity…The legend of Lincoln continues to fascinate, and this compulsively readable fictional autobiography approaches the man and the myth from a fresh new angle.”

    Booklist

  • “Audacious as ever, Jerome Charyn now casts his novelist’s gimlet eye on sad-souled Abraham Lincoln, a man of many parts, who controls events and people—wife, sons, a splintering nation—even though they often are, as they must be, beyond his compassion or power. Brooding, dreamlike, resonant, and studded with strutting characters, I Am Abraham is as wide and deep and morally sure as its wonderful subjects.”

    Brenda Wineapple, author of Ecstatic Nation: Confidence, Crisis, and Compassion: 1848-1877

Write a Review
What is FlexPass?
  • Your first audiobook is just $5.95
  • Over 90% are at or below $12.95
  • "LOVE IT" guarantee
  • No time limits or expirations
About the Author

Jerome Charyn, a master of lyrical farce and literary ventriloquism, published his first novel in 1964. The author of Johnny One-Eye, The Secret Life of Emily Dickenson, and dozens of other acclaimed novels and nonfiction works, he lives in New York and Paris.