John Wlikes Booth awoke Good Friday morning, April 14th, 1865, hungover and depressed.
The Confederacy was dead.
This well researched account of the asassination of President Lincoln reads like a good work of fiction, pulling the reader along with fascinating historical detail and day by day accounts of America’s greatest manhunt. Washington’s mood was elevated after years of bloodshed and was ready to celebrate the impending defeat of the Confederacy. The “Great Illumination”, a wonderous lighting of every possible public and private building by candlelight, torch, and fireworks had just occurred. The city was finally starting to brighten, but Booth was feeling very blue. His beloved Confederacy was crumbling, and only a bold and decisive stroke could save it. A series of circumstances the morning after the illumination changed Booth’s outlook and the course of the nations history.
After setting in motion a plot that had been in the planning stages for some time, the murderous deed was done. The reader is taken along on the chase through Maryland and Virginia, feeling as though they are standing off to the side, witnessing the words and actions of the villain and those in pursuit. Many direct quotes from the historical record, Booth’s diary, and newspaper accounts are used to create a feeling of immediacy and “insider” knowledge. The author James L.Swanson has created a compelling account of our national tragedy with many photos and illustrations included. I was reluctant to see the book end and lingered over some sections before returning my copy.
Check the BPL catalog for this title: Manhunt