Friday, July 23, 2010

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter by Seth Grahame-Smith

So I've been reading a lot this past week but have a major case of the lazies.

Need I give a summary of this? I mean, what more do you need to know besides it being an account of good ole Honest Abe and his secret life as a Vampire Slayer? Not much. Here, though, are my thoughts:

First, I liked it better than the author's previous work Pride & Prejudice and Zombies. It was more compelling because of some (obvious) liberties taken with the life of Lincoln. There are a host of fictional characters thrown in, a secret journal, an unexpected friendship with a mysterious vampire, and an underground network of powerful undead who may hold the fate of the nation in their cold and deadly hands. It all adds up to a mediumly funny spin.

Second. It's Lincoln. How many people do you hear these days say, "Oh I don't think that Lincoln bloke was much of a president. In fact, I forget he even was president." Right. So you can't help but like the main character. Grahame-Smith does a good job at making fictional journal entries capture the essence of Lincoln. I was going to quote a few passages but I returned it without writing them down. So, sorry. But I appreciate the journal aspects because the language fits the times and also includes some rather charming dry wit. Example: After defending his client whom he later learns is a vampire and therefore has to destroy, Lincoln writes down in his journal, "Well I suppose that may be the only time I ever defend a client in court and behead them in the same day." Or something to that effect.

Third thought. It's not the page-turner that some other recent reads have been. It does read like a biography, and as I'm not in the mood for a biography, I found myself trudging through parts. And now that I think about it, I wonder how many people actually think this is a real biography of Lincoln . . .

Anyway. Good but not awesome. 3.5 bloody axes for creative writing and lack of sparkle-in-the-sun vampires.

Book source: Local library.

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