Indiana, 1818. Moonlight falls through the dense woods that surround a one-room cabin, where a nine-year-old Abraham Lincoln kneels at his suffering mother's bedside. She's been stricken with something the old-timers call "Milk Sickness."
"My baby boy..." she whispers before dying.
Only later will the grieving Abe learn that his mother's fatal affliction was actually the work of a vampire.
When the truth becomes known to young Lincoln, he writes in his journal, "henceforth my life shall be one of rigorous study and devotion. I shall become a master of mind and body. And this mastery shall have but one purpose..." Gifted with his legendary height, strength, and skill with an ax, Abe sets out on a path of vengeance that will lead him all the way to the White House.
While Abraham Lincoln is widely lauded for saving a Union and freeing millions of slaves, his valiant fight against the forces of the undead has remained in the shadows for hundreds of years. That is, until Seth Grahame-Smith stumbled upon The Secret Journal of Abraham Lincoln, and became the first living person to lay eyes on it in more than 140 years.
Using the journal as his guide and writing in the grand biographical style of Doris Kearns Goodwin and David McCullough, Seth has reconstructed the true life story of our greatest president for the first time-all while revealing the hidden history behind the Civil War and uncovering the role vampires played in the birth, growth, and near-death of our nation.
©2010 Seth Grahame-Smith (P)2010 Hachette Audio
The author does a great mash up of history and the alternate theme of vampires. The book starts in a Edgar Rice Burroughs way where the author places himself in it as a receiptant of Lincoln's secret diary and catelogs Lincoln's hidden life a Vampire Hunter and how he meets other great historical figures who seem to follow these lines.
I agree with others that it was dry, but the fascinating real historical mash up kept me going. It would be interesting to read more along these lines. In the book the narrator (the author) mentions how vampire's and the secret war to remove them drive history and you can really let yourself believe it.
Sadly the book does grind slowly near the later part of the book, and not as filled with the thrill of vampire hunts that you would expect. Still this is a must read for a new genre of alternative history.
What a fascinating book. I don't know if it was the intention of the author to try and trick readers into wanting to learn more about our 16th president, but wow did it ever. The way he wove fact with fiction, seemingly seamlessly was very well done, now i just can't wait for the movie....Andrew
This was a great listen. Very interesting and lots of fun and believable. I was actually inspired to buy an Abraham Lincoln biography after finishing this book because I was so fascinated by the author's portrayal of Honest Abe. Thanks to the author and a great job by the narrator (many books are spoiled by bad narrators).
Scott Holst (narrator) has an awesome voice. His accent, inflection, and cadence are exactly what I would expect The Great Man (Lincoln) to have sounded like. Further, Grahame-Smith's writing of dialog is completely in keeping with the literary convention of American English in the mid 1800's.
The whole premise of the book is really a lot of fun, mixing in actual history with the sub-plot of vampires and their hunters operating behind the scenes of The Civil War.
Buy it. Listen to it. Love it!
I was not sure about this book at first. But if you love history and vampires this book is for you. This is now one of my favorite books.
Love to read books,but not enough Time
I have to admit when I saw an American Hero & Legend with a spin by Seth Gram Smith .
I could not wait too hear it! I loved the idea of an interesting new look though fiction at our most loved president.
I was 100% spellbound Loved it more than Sense & Sensibility & Sea Monsters but not as much as Pride & Prejudice & Zombies. Seth Brings new dimensions to history, that truly thrill and tease you imagination. Great for long Trips keeps you alert and entertained!
I loved this book. I had been hesitant about buying this book, thinking it was some type of comedy, but heard a positive review on Windows Weekly podcast and decided to buy it. Boy, was I surprised. The idea for the story is brilliant and the author pulled it off really well. It was really believable. Whether you like vampire stories or not, this is a must read for everyone because it's really entertaining.
I was afraid this would be one of those wannabe Twilight knock-offs, but I was pleasantly surprised! It reads like a true biography and is so believable that it can't be called cheesy. Definitely worth a listen!
Like many of my favorite books, I didn't have high expectations here. Let's face it. The whole "re-make classic lit into monster books" genre is a cute idea but it has limits.
Surprisingly, this book catches you right away and never lets go. It manages to take a silly concept and transform it into an engaging dramatic retelling of Lincoln's life story with a real "Paul Harvey" twist. We're treated to the rest of the story in a dark, film noir kind of way that really holds your attention.
If you know Lincoln, you know what's coming for him--loss, pain, death. Even with that knowledge, you find yourself grieving for his losses and cheering for his triumphs.
How'd Seth do that in a story about Vampires and a dead President? Got me. But if his next book is Jimmy Carter: Werewolf, I'll be first in line to buy it.
Very enjoyable re-imagining of Lincoln's life, interpreting his drives and motives as wanting to rid America of vampires. Lots more behind this book than the funny title, it has substance and it kept me interested and wanting more through the whole listen.
Author did an amazing job of using the language of the time, the dialogue is very authentic.
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