Four Score and Several Slain Vampires Ago… (Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter – A Book Review)

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter #1)

Author: Seth Grahame-Smith

Published: 2010

On Goodreads

My Rating:

Rated H for a historical-horror retelling that indulges in political conspiracy and epic vampire slayage.

Indiana, 1818. In a one-room cabin, nine-year-old Abraham Lincoln kneels at his mother’s bedside…and learns that her ailing affliction is actually the work of a vampire.

Abraham Lincoln lost his mother at a young tender age from a vampire attack. From that moment on, he waged his own personal war on the undead. While his historical journey is followed to a tee, his intrigue with the occult is highlighted to give more life to this paranormal-horror. Lincoln wasn’t about to allow America to become overridden and nearly on the verge of enslavement by vampires. This is his life story, the one unheard of.

I was pretty curious about this one. Grahame-Smith really delves into the darkness of monstrosity and horror, but he doesn’t solely rely on just monsters being monsters. This time around humans have turned out to be monstrous as well, Still, I did take enjoyment in the dark side of vampires, enjoying the break from their apparent over indulgence in emotional tethers and retching romance on top of some desperation to stay connected to their former humanity.

Lincoln came off as a badass but managed to keep humility, and I greatly appreciated that. Grahame-Smith impressively kept in tune with Lincoln and his history while also weaving his own story into the man’s life/biography. Such a retelling seemed odd at first and almost laughable, but proved to be anything but. And, the added photography and art gave it life, adding content that really pulled me in, it definitely gave way to finding this history believable.

I’m not big on historical fiction, not as a main genre/theme that is. It can be really dry, which was the case here. Because of that, it took me forever to finish this. Written in a journalism/essay style, I couldn’t fully keep invested and sometimes I couldn’t even keep my eye open. LOL.

Still, that didn’t make this novel horrible. With peak moments of action and contemplation of humanity, they felt far and between. One of the best bits had to be how Grahame-Smith brought Edgar Allen Poe into the book. It was my absolute favorite and stunning. Poe is one of my favorite Gothic authors; how cliché of me, eh? His embellishment of horror with morose emotions really made him a great fit. It became so logically believable that he and Lincoln would have such a strong connection. So, when they shared the page, I was glued.

Overall

This is one of those, “You have to decide for yourself.” deals. There was much I enjoyed about it, but there were things that I didn’t as well. I can say is that it was worth the time to read though.

Quotables:

“Without death, life is meaningless. It is a story that can never be told. A song that can never be sung, For how could one finish it?” (p.77)

Surely life has taught you that a thing can be both beautiful and vile.” (Edgar Allen Poe, p. 202)

“Some people are just too interesting to kill, Abraham.” (Henry Sturgess, p.288)

Only the dead have seen the end of war.” (p. 301)

More to come soon…                                                                                               

  -K.

Song Today? Sign of the Times by Harry Styles.

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