Friday, December 7, 2012

Historical Fiction Book Tours: The Lincoln Conspiracy

About the Book

Publication Date:  September 18, 2012 | Ballantine Books | 368p

Buy: Amazon

DESCRIPTION:  A nation shattered by its president’s murder. Two diaries that reveal the true scope of an American conspiracy. A detective determined to bring the truth to light, no matter what it costs him

From award-winning journalist Timothy L. O’Brien comes a gripping historical thriller that poses a provocative question: What if the plot to assassinate President Lincoln was wider and more sinister than we ever imagined?

In late spring of 1865, as America mourns the death of its leader, Washington, D.C., police detective Temple McFadden makes a startling discovery. Strapped to the body of a dead man at the B&O Railroad station are two diaries, two documents that together reveal the true depth of the Lincoln conspiracy. Securing the diaries will put Temple’s life in jeopardy—and will endanger the fragile peace of a nation still torn by war.

Temple’s quest to bring the conspirators to justice takes him on a perilous journey through the gaslit streets of the Civil War–era capital, into bawdy houses and back alleys where ruthless enemies await him in every shadowed corner. Aided by an underground network of friends—and by his wife, Fiona, a nurse who possesses a formidable arsenal of medicinal potions—Temple must stay one step ahead of Lafayette Baker, head of the Union Army’s spy service. Along the way, he’ll run from or rely on Edwin Stanton, Lincoln’s fearsome secretary of war; the legendary Scottish spymaster Allan Pinkerton; abolitionist Sojourner Truth; the photographer Alexander Gardner; and many others.

Bristling with twists and building to a climax that will leave readers gasping, The Lincoln Conspiracy offers a riveting new account of what truly motivated the assassination of one of America’s most beloved presidents—and who participated in the plot to derail the train of liberty that Lincoln set in motion.

Review: Abraham Lincoln is everywhere this year. In movie theaters and in books. He's slaying vampires and he's creating history.

I have to admit I was caught up in the Lincoln bandwagon this year, thanks to that paranormal twist on history, so when I got a chance to read this book, I grabbed it. It is a little more rooted in reality, but with a heaping helping of speculation to make this a gripping read.

It isn't always the fastest moving book, but history doesn't usually make for fast paced reads. At some points it does feel like its dragging, but I really found myself liking the characters. Temple and Fiona aren't your usual couple, but they really work at trying to piece together why Lincoln was murdered.

This book forced me to go to Wiki several times to see which parts were rooted in fact and which were made up. Lafayette Baker did have something to do with John Wilkes Booth's diary, though when they came to light, he claimed 18 pages were missing.

This book really weaved facts with fiction in such a way that you could almost confuse it as reality. There are quite a few conspiracy theories surrounding Lincoln's death, and this one touches on one of them, as well as whether or not Booth was really murdered after killing Lincoln.

If you are a history buff, and one that has a fascination for the Civil War era and the years following it, you shouldn't miss this book.

Rating: 4 flowers

Author Bio

Timothy L. O’Brien is the Executive Editor of The Huffington Post, where he edited the 2012 Pulitzer Prize–winning series about wounded war veterans, “Beyond the Battlefield.” Previously, he was an editor and reporter at The New York Times. There, he helped to lead a team of Times reporters that was a finalist for a Pulitzer Prize in Public Service in 2009 for coverage of the financial crisis. O’Brien, a graduate of Georgetown University, holds three master's degrees -- in US History,Business and Journalism -- all from Columbia University. He lives in Montclair, New Jersey, with his wife and two children.


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