April 1 marks the availability of a new book by local children’s author Donna Janell Bowman. Abraham Lincoln’s Dueling Words reveals young Lincoln’s almost-duel with political rival James Shields, including how the lessons Lincoln learned from the incident made him a better man.
“Like most Americans, my early impression of Abraham Lincoln was shaped by how history memorialized his great contributions, his reputation as a joke teller and how he pulled himself up by the bootstraps to become a beloved president,” says Bowman.
“When I stumbled across a one-line mention of his duel, I was taken aback. The more I dug into Lincoln’s life, the more I discovered Lincoln as a complex, flawed human being who occasionally made bad decisions — just like the rest of us,” she says. “I hope young readers will be inspired to know that even Lincoln wasn’t perfect, but he learned from his mistakes. I also hope they will consider what would have happened if the duel had ended another way and Lincoln never became president.”
BookPeople will host a speaking and book signing appearance by Bowman on April 15 at 2 p.m.