The book is offered as a historical 'thriller', and that is exactly how it reads. The entire book spans events of a few short weeks, yet the authors manage to breathe life into the events, the environment, and the characters of the time. I feel I know the persons of Abraham Lincoln, Mary Todd Lincoln, John Wilkes Booth, Ulysses S. Grant, and Robert E. Lee better than before I read the book. Even Daniel Boone and General Custer are mentioned, though there is no commentary on Jefferson Davis nor much on the politics leading to the Civil war. Critics point out discrepancies in the details, but I find these to be relatively minor. This is an engaging recounting of the Lincoln assassination and I found it to be informative and interesting.
Best book I've listened to
Bill OReilly normally bugs me, but he does a great job with the narrative. If you like history, then this is a must buy.
father, husband, guitarist, dirt-bike'ist, normal guy trying to make it all work
one of the best I've heard, and I've heard a few.
incredible amounts of situational historical details, including conversations, private thoughts of the players; either extremely abundant research, or extreme taking of factual liberties; I would wage on the former. Outstanding scholarship.
excellent; it was a wise decision to have Bill read his own book; perfect timing on emphasis, voice drops, pitch, texture, etc. He has a no-nonsense assertive voice; strong and compelling, which adds to the intensity and flow of the story. Love his contextual reminders at beginning of each chapter; i.e. "Friday, April 21st, 1865, Maryland Swamps, Nighttime...." That technique (and the book overall) takes the listener to the front seat of the developments, and adds to the (appropriate) historical tension inherent in the events. His narration took me right to the scene;
yes: it was extremely well written and narrated;
Love him or hate him, there is no getting around the fact: Bill is a machine (I am of the former group); he cranks out superlative works of authorship; after listening to this compelling book, I now feel I have a solid command of the events surrounding President Lincoln's death, AND unexpectedly, a command of the military events and logistical machinations of the latter part of the war; I feel capable of discussing intelligently the attributes of Robert E. Lee, U.S. Grant, and other seemingly "collateral" players of the drama of those critical years. "Efficient yield" you could call it; the listen did not take much time, the story vice-gripped my attention, and now I know much of this critical part of U.S. history. Living in Richmond, VA, of all places, I am now motivated to visit (and force my children to go with me) some of these many Virginia locales that served as the stage for this epochal human drama we call the Civil War. Thank you, Bill (and Mr. Dugard)
It is often true that authors are not the best narrators of their work. But this is not the case in this book. O'Reilly introduces this as a suspense tale and that is what he gives us. Even if you remember it all (which I did not) from your school days, this is so much better.
.It probably would have been a very good story had someone else read it. See below
Mr O'reilly mispronounces the word cavalry dozens and dozens of times, and it drives me nuts. He pronounces it "calvary". It is like fingernails on a blackboard. One would think an experienced announcer could not make such an egregious error. One would also think that someone on his staff would have had the nerve to confront him about it. I quit listening
I didn't read it.
Factual detail, particularly right after Lincoln was shot
No, I listen while driving
I actually got teary eyed when O'Reilly described Lincoln last moments.
Thank you, Bill.
I would only recommend it to someone who either loves Bill O'Reilly or has an interest in the Lincoln assassination. Bill's journalistic style took what was supposed to be a "thriller" and made it into a lackluster resuscitation of facts. His inappropriate inflection and mispronunciation of words distracted from the material. I'm sure in the hands of another narrator this would've been great.
Yes, but only because I have a keen interest in the subject. Without that dedication, I probably would've move on to another book.
Regardless of what one think's of Bill O'Reilly, this is a fascinating book. The only negative thing aspect for me was that it did start a little slow, bogging down in detailing some of the final battles/skirmishes of the Civil War, but once the book began detailing the personalities involved in the plot it became fascinating. O'Reilly is a polished narrator from his time on the Factor, and he is very gifted in making strong arguments. I don't agree with all of the perspectives that were presented in the book, but there were truly a lot of strange coincidences for it to have been solely the work of the conspirators that were ultimately found guilty. Equally strange were some of the post war incidents that involved so many of the people closely involved with the investigation. I would certainly recommend this book as it is immensely entertaining. Judge for yourself what parts that you deem plausible and which seem conjecture.
Bad history, sophomorically presented. A book for children.O'Reilly's narration is as abominable as his writing.
This was a really good take on Lincolns story. Ive read Team of Rivals and this book provided another really good read on Lincoln. It took me quite a while to get used to Bill OReillys style. He stuck true to form for his style of commentary. I wasn't sure that I liked it at first and Im still not. But he wrote a really really good book. I think if going into it I knew that it was totally "Bill OReilly" style.....fast - just as he speaks on camera, it may not have taken so long to get used to his form of reading. I did like the way he wove the story in the last third of the book. I also liked the end of the book and the updates to each character. The tale of whether John Wilkes Booth was really killed is a fascinating one and I liked that it was addressed in the book. I now need to decide if I should read Killing Kennedy. :-)