A much-anticipated new biography about the Rebbe—Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, of righteous memory—sold out within hours of its release on Tuesday.

Rebbe: The Life and Teachings of Menachem M. Schneerson, the Most Influential Rabbi in Modern History by Joseph Telushkin also reached No. 15 on both Amazon’s and Barnes & Noble’s best-seller lists.

Calling the book “a captivating portrait,” publisher HarperCollins asserted that Rebbe is “the definitive guide to understanding one of the most vital, intriguing figures of the last centuries.”

Describing the Rebbe as a “towering figure who saw beyond conventional boundaries to turn his movement into one of the most dynamic and widespread organizations ever seen in the Jewish world,” Katherine Beitner, director of publicity for HarperCollins Publishers, said that “from his modest headquarters in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, the Rebbe advised some of the world’s greatest leaders, and shaped matters of state and society.”

Publishers Weekly stated, “What stands out [in the book is the Rebbe’s] engagement with the principles by which he managed to wield a considerable influence upon the American cultural scene and the Jewish world. … The book is rich with accounts of encounters with the Rebbe, including, besides his own followers, Jews of many denominations, secular Israeli leaders, American politicians, students of philosophy, and non-Jews.”

Explaining how the book’s content resonates with people from all walks of life, Professor Ruth R. Wisse wrote for Commentary magazine that Telushkin’s new work—along with the more scholarly and well-received “My Rebbe” by noted scholar Rabbi Adin Even-Yisrael Steinsaltz—offers a picture into how the Rebbe “harnessed American freedoms not to free Jews from the perceived limitations of their national religion but to demonstrate the power and attractiveness of the Jewish way of life. His welcoming confidence inspired confidence in the way of life he was offering and the faith tradition he embodied.”

National radio talk-show host Dennis Prager, who interviewed the author on his show Tuesday, called the new book “one of the greatest religious biographies ever written.”

With three weeks to go until 3 Tammuz—the Hebrew anniversary, or yarhtzeit, of the Rebbe’s passing, this year on July 1—interest is expected to mount, as people from all over the world continue to draw wisdom and inspiration from the Rebbe’s legacy and vision.

Rebbe went on sale on June 10, and immediately rose to the top of several best-seller lists, remaining in the top 25.

Said Beitner: “It is rare to see so much interest in a new title so quickly. The demand has been so great that we have already gone back to press in order to more than double our original printing. Clearly, people all over the globe have been affected by the Rebbe’s message, which remains just as relevant and strong, if not stronger, 20 years after his passing.”