Pat Frade


Excellent, Young Adult, Bill O'Reilly, Martin Dougard, Abraham Lincoln, History, Nonfiction

Document Type

Book Review


Killing Lincoln is a non-fiction (though it reads like historical fiction) account of the end of the Civil War, the assassination of Lincoln, and the capture of John Wilkes Booth and his conspirators (time period between March 4, 1865 thru July 7, 1865). The book is divided into 4 parts: total war, the ides of death, the long good Friday, and the chase. Part 1 describes the final days of the Civil War as Robert E. Lee and Ulysses S. Grant are locked in battle. John Wilkes Booth is introduced as a Northerner who is a southern sympathizer and is outraged that the Union is winning so he plans to kidnap Abraham Lincoln. The Ides of death begins on the night of April 10 in Washington, D.C. with citizens celebrating the end of the war and waiting for a speech by Abraham Lincoln. Booth’s plans to kidnap the President have changed to killing the President. In “The Long Good Friday,” April 14th begins with Lincoln in the White House, then at the play at Ford’s Theater, and ends the following dawn. The final section details the search for John Wilkes Booth and anyone connected with or suspected of being linked to the assassination of President Lincoln.