Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Killing Lincoln: The Shocking Assassination that Changed America Forever

By Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard; Published: Sep 27, 2011; 288 pages

Killing Lincoln begins with this sentence: “The man with six weeks to live is anxious.” This book, written like a thriller novel counting down the days in present tense, is supposed to build suspense as readers follow what happens each day to Lincoln and his family, Generals Grant and Lee and the Civil War, and John Wilkes Booth and his co-conspirators as they count down the final days of Lincoln’s life. While this approach captivated me initially, as the book continued the approach became somewhat tedious, mainly regarding Booth and his buddies. I admit to skimming the last section of the book to catch the important details.

Still, I would highly recommend this book. I learned so much about Lincoln’s assassination and the surrounding events that perpetuated that his sad death. I won’t share details because that will spoil the plot. The book was a fast read despite the historical details. Unfortunately, some key aspects of the conspiracy theory, which I thought should have been more centrally placed in the book, were tucked away in the epilogue. I really liked the brief synopses at the end of the book explaining what happened to key people after the President’s death.

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