Rainer Maria Rilke

"Live a while in these books, learn from them what seems to you worth learning, but above all love them. This love will be repaid you a thousand and a thousand times, and however your life may turn,-it will, I am certain of it, run through the fabric of your growth as one of the most important threads among all the threads of your experiences, disappointments, and joys."--Rainer Maia Rilke


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Monday, September 30, 2013

For History Buffs

Lincoln's Grave Robbers by Steve Sheinkin

History

The cover and back story on this book reminded me so much of Bloody Times and Finding Lincoln's Killer by James Swanson that I actually thought it this was a sequel in the series when I bought it.  However, it wasn't nearly the calibre and quality of Swanson's books, which is a shame because, in many ways, I found this story to be more fascinating.  It is certainly not as well-known.  I've never heard of it and I'm quite a history buff, so that's really saying something.

The book involves the very interesting dilemma of Abe Lincoln's body and the fact that it was difficult to keep in one place.  Then, there's counterfeiting--a huge counterfeiting enterprise that has worldwide implications.  What do these two seemingly unconnected topics have in common?  Old-fashioned greed and some really inept thieves.  Apparently, these criminals decided to kidnap the body of our beloved President Lincoln and hold it for ransom.

I'm not sure if I thought the book was just okay because I was comparing it to the other two.  It came off as mediocre story, almost as if the author was doing a book project, rather than relating his own fascination with the story.  I think the story would have been more captivating if it were told in a narrative strain.  It just felt like a retelling.  Some humor, or sadness--some emotion--would have gone a long way towards making this a better story.  This book is probably best for history buffs and not the adolescents it was marketed to.

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