I just finished Doris Kearns Goodwin’s Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln. It is an astonishing reminder of Lincoln’s capacity to weather the difficulties and trials of the nation during the Civil War, while dealing compassionately and patiently with the egos and political aspirations of those around him.
Earlier this summer, I read a whole lot of Flannery O’Connor’s work — a Catholic writer from Georgia, who died before she was 40 from complications related to lupus. I found her to be an insightful — and incredibly funny — author, whose work has stood the test of time since her death. I particularly enjoyed Mystery and Manners, the posthumous collection of her “occasional prose,” and The Habit of Being, a collection of her correspondence with a variety of friends and colleagues.
Among the things I’m reading right now are The Second One Thousand Years: Ten People Who Defined a Millenium, edited by Richard John Neuhaus, and The Foundations of Modern Science in the Middle Ages, by Edward Grant.