Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter
by Seth Grahame-Smith
Narrated by Scott Holst

Indiana, 1818. Moonlight falls through the dense woods that surround a one-room cabin, where a nine-year-old Abraham Lincoln kneels at his suffering mother's bedside. She's been stricken with something the old-timers call "Milk Sickness."

"My baby boy..." she whispers before dying.

Only later will the grieving Abe learn that his mother's fatal affliction was actually the work of a vampire.

When the truth becomes known to young Lincoln, he writes in his journal, "henceforth my life shall be one of rigorous study and devotion. I shall become a master of mind and body. And this mastery shall have but one purpose..." Gifted with his legendary height, strength, and skill with an ax, Abe sets out on a path of vengeance that will lead him all the way to the White House.

While Abraham Lincoln is widely lauded for saving a Union and freeing millions of slaves, his valiant fight against the forces of the undead has remained in the shadows for hundreds of years. That is, until Seth Grahame-Smith stumbled upon The Secret Journal of Abraham Lincoln, and became the first living person to lay eyes on it in more than 140 years.

Using the journal as his guide and writing in the grand biographical style of Doris Kearns Goodwin and David McCullough, Seth has reconstructed the true life story of our greatest president for the first time-all while revealing the hidden history behind the Civil War and uncovering the role vampires played in the birth, growth, and near-death of our nation.

I’ve been trying to convince myself that I don’t need an Audible membership for a couple of years now, but that conviction crumbled not too long ago when I was at work and ran out of podcasts to listen to.

Click HERE and HERE if you have no idea how absurd that is.

Anyway, this gaping hole in my workday listening choices coupled with a preview of this audiobook on the Audible iOS app forced my hand. The next day at work I was ears deep in a fictional account of Abraham Lincoln’s life as a vampire hunter.

Firstly, the idea of this book is brilliant. I don’t know what it is about Lincoln that makes him an awesome time traveler or superhero or Chia pet or vampire hunter, but I’m ready and willing to consume any ridiculous adventure starring our 16th President.

Secondly, this book is such a brilliant mix of absurdity and actual fact, that I found myself questioning my own knowledge of history. I mean, I’m not the best person at remembering actual historical events, but I had a hard time remembering if Abe and Edgar Allen Poe had ever met in some kind of historically recognized way, for example.

Also, picture Abe Lincoln hucking an axe at a vampire. You know you can picture it. Something about that guy makes that image easy to picture. And that’s awesome.

Thirdly, props to this narrator for bringing everything to life. This guy acted his way through narrating from the present day, narrating from the past, Abe’s journal entries, letters of significance written to and from Abe, speeches by various famous historical figures, and the different voices of all major players in this story. Most of which are done in a variety of charming Southern accents, but all distinctive from each other. That is an impressive level of voice acting skill.

Fourthly, extra props to the producers of this audiobook whose music and background sound choices are a joy to discover on the second listen I’m working through now.

If you have not yet listened to an audiobook, get yourself a copy of this one. I’ve reviewed a few audiobooks on here before, but I don’t think I’ve ever been as excited to review and relisten to one as much as I have been with this one.

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