The Historical Journal
"Guelzo's is a satisfying portrait, perhaps because he has been a scholar of Jonathan Edwards, so is more conscious of the intellectual and political contexts that preceded and made Lincoln, but less concerned with the retrospective usefulness of Lincoln as a national icon."
Times Literary Supplement
"Abraham Lincoln: Redeemer President is the best study of Lincoln's religious thought, and all the better because it situates that thought in the context of Lincoln's whole career. Guelzo's purpose is to take Lincoln seriously 'as a man of ideas.' He succeeds admirably. . . .But it is in his analysis of Lincoln's religious ideas that Guelzo makes his most important contribution."
"Guelzo's book, the first true intellectual biography of the man the author calls America's 'redeemer president,' ranks among the most significant half-dozen studies of Lincoln during a remarkable decade of scholarship. . . . Especially perceptive is Guelzo's portrayal of Lincoln's odyssey from youthful scoffer to perhaps most religious of US presidents, ever rejecting the ritual and denominational dogma of public worship but increasingly taken with a personal form of Calvinist spirituality culminating in his immortal Second Inaugural Address, arguably the most profound exploration of religious values ever penned by an American author. . . Recommended for literate readers at all levels."
"Is it possible that amid the voluminous literature on Abraham Lincoln, there is room for yet another study? Allen Guelzo's Abraham Lincoln eloquently proves that there is, since religion has been sorely neglected by historians of Lincoln and the Civil War."
The Wall Street Journal
"The number of books about Abraham Lincoln is almost beyond counting. . . Unique among this outpouring is Allen C. Guelzo's 'Abraham Lincoln: Redeemer President,' an intellectual biography of a president who was, at bottom, a man of ideas. . . Interestingly, for Lincoln the mixing of moralism and politics came rather late. . . With the approach of the Civil War, he began to make use of religious imagery in his public statements, while the war itself seemed to provoke in him something close to a religious quest to discover its meaning. Dissecting this quest forms the core of 'Redeemer President,' and the job Mr. Guelzo does of it is masterly. . . It is a testament to the strength of 'Redeemer President' that the matters it addresses resist easy summary. The value of the book itself, however, is easy enough to state: Out of the countless volumes written about our 16th president, it ranks quite simply among the best."
The Weekly Standard
"One of the subtlest and deepest studies of Lincoln's faith and thought in many years. . . Seldom has the complex connection between Lincoln's predispositions and Lincoln's achievements been more insightfully studied than in Allen Guelzo's superb book."
"This rich and subtle study of Lincoln's intellectual life well deserves to have received the prestigious Lincoln Prize; it is superb."
"With the freshness of insight often afforded scholars who cross disciplinary boundaries, the author, a student of intellectual and religious history, makes an important contribution to the field of Lincoln studies. . . This is a thoughtful, engaging, and provocative book that will enlighten both Civil War specialists and students of American history."
The Filson Club History Quarterly
"This co-winner of the 1999 Lincoln Prize is a subtle, insightful, and convincing analysis of Abraham Lincoln. . . .Guelzo's analysis is sound and generally convincing. . . This is one of the most important books in a decade rich in Lincoln scholarship."
The Journal of Southern History
"Is there really a place for yet another work on Abraham Lincoln? Allen C. Guelzo has superbly demonstrated that there is. . . Not only does the reader of this volume learn much about Lincoln but also about those intertwining economic, intellectual, political, and religious aspects of American life that so influenced the thought of Abraham Lincoln and others in the nineteenth century. This book deserves its rightful place among other exemplary Lincoln biographies."
Register of the Kentucky Historical Society
"Solid, well-reasearched, and thought provoking. A welcome addition to our ceaseless national fascination with Kentucky's most famous citizen. . . The millennial scholarship on Lincoln is off to an excellent start."