The title pretty much says it all. Rather than integrating vampire-related plot lines into an existing work of literature (as he did in Pride and Prejudice and Zombies), Seth Grahame-Smith this time mixes fact and fantasy in a completely fresh telling of the life of Abraham Lincoln, from his early days in Kentucky and Illinois, where he was first exposed to bloodthirsty demons, all the way through his presidential service and eventual assassination at the hands of actor/vampire John Wilkes Booth.
Utilizing the very readable style that David McCullough is famous for, the author does a very good job of making the reader wonder which parts are truthful and which are fanciful. Of course, Lincoln was no stranger to personal tragedy, so there are plenty of opportunities to recast the sorrows of his life into more sinister events.
It is also very enjoyable to hear many of the major events of Lincoln’s life (real and surreal) in his own voice, via the author’s rather skillful usage of written “correspondence” between Lincoln and other major characters in the story.
I do not know if Grahame-Smith is a bona fide Lincoln fan (I am merely a casual fan, although I have been to Springfield and visited all the appropriate locations) or just a very, very good researcher, but based on my average knowledge of the former president’s life, this work covers all the major parts quite succinctly. And if you ever find yourself in Springfield, Illinois, stop by Lincoln’s Tomb. The book’s final chapter explains why the president’s sarcophagus is built the way it is.
Rated: Moderate. More than 30 instances of the two most common mild terms, and just under two dozen combined usages of more moderate words and phrases, of which over half are related to Deity.