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The Ambush of My Name (US Grant mysteries Book 1) Kindle Edition

3.5 out of 5 stars 75 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In his first novel, The Ambush of My Name, Jeffrey Marks reimagines Ulysses S. Grant's post-war homecoming to Georgetown, Ohio, as a historical mystery. When Grant is met with hostility from many townspeople and with a corpse in his hotel room, he tracks the murderer to find out who wants to make trouble for him in the presidential elections.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

From the Author

Jeffrey Marks was born in Georgetown, Ohio, the boyhood home of Ulysses S. Grant. Although he moved with his family at an early age, the family frequently told stories about Grant and the people of the small farming community.

At the age of twelve, he was introduced to the works of Agatha Christie via her short story collection, The Underdog and Other Stories. He finished all her books by the age of sixteen and had begun to collect mystery first editions.

After stints on the high school and college newspapers, he began to freelance. After numerous author profiles, he chose to chronicle the short but full life of mystery writer Craig Rice.

That biography (which comes out in the US in April 2001 as Who Was That Lady?) encouraged him to write mystery fiction. The Ambush of My Name is the first mystery novel by Marks to be published although he has several mystery short story anthologies on the market.

His work has won a number of awards including the Barnes and Noble Prize and he was nominated for a Maxwell award. Today, he writes from his home in Cincinnati, which he shares with his dog


Product Details

  • File Size: 599 KB
  • Print Length: 183 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publication Date: March 14, 2010
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003CFB44G
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #820,810 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Hiram Grant, re christened Ulysses S Grant by the U.S.Army, decides to revisit Georgetown, Ohio prior to the run for presidency his wife desires more than he. Fresh from the war, Grant is labeled hero by some and butcher by others. To his disappointment, a hero's welcome after a twenty-five year absence from his childhood hometown is withheld.

Escorted to the National Union hotel's best accommodations, Grant and his socially-conscious wife, Julia, discover their locked room's bed is already occupied -- by a dead man.

A single Confederate bill mixed with the dead man's belongings, an anxious young journalist aspiring to be the next Horace Greeley and an old flame resurfacing add to Grant's problems.

Following the recent assassination of the president and amid rumors of plans to kill Lincoln's entire cabinet, Grant is forced to confront the threats as viable. Much to Grant's distaste, a Pinkerton detective is sent as his body guard.

Jeffrey Marks proves his storytelling abilities worth the reader's time with THE AMBUSH OF MY NAME. Marks use of personality nuances of his characters make them seem like old acquaintances. We can feel the grit while we sidestep horse dung in the dust-filled streets. Caught up in the mystery, the reader delights in finding historical facts lead us not into a mere history lesson, but into an engaging hunt for clues to the superb resolution.
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There are elements of this novel that I liked very much. The history seemed well researched. Some of the characters are interesting (although others could be cardboard cutouts.) the concept is intriguing. The major weakness, in my opinion, is that the book is not very well written. The author shows Grant looking up from a dead body on the bed and noticing that the pictures on the walls are watercolors by local artists. What's with that? Frequently, when Grant is put in an embarassing or uncomfortable situation he thinks, "This is worse than Cold Harbor" or some other battle. Not at all believable. I really liked the idea and wanted to like the book, but what should be a fun read turned into chore at times.
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Format: Paperback
In The Ambush of My Name, a story of Ulysses Grant and his wife Julia, Grant returns to his hometown expecting a hero's welcome. What he finds is a dead body waiting for him in his hotel room at the National Union.

He receives a second surprise when his childhood sweetheart, Adelaide Duncan, shows up unexpectedly and appears to be involved in some way.

With the help of a young reporter named Hart and a Pinkerton agent named Tyson, Grant tries to solve the mystery of who the dead man is and why he was murdered. Is the body left in Grant's room to sully his name? Could it have anything to do with the Lincoln assassination? The suspect list is relatively short, but as the story progresses things take a few twists and turns to keep you guessing, including attempts on Grant's life. The resolution to this story will, I think, surprise you.

I hope Jeffrey Marks might bring General Grant and his wife, Julia, back for a curtain call in future books. The characters, as Marks created them, were endearing and memorable. I was delighted with this debut novel and look forward to more stories by this author.

Marja McGraw
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
One of the things I like about Jeffrey A. Marks' writing is that, probably because he has read and loves mysteries of the Golden age, his stories show the influence of such luminaries as Agatha Christie and Ngaio Marsh. His use of language is excellent, without being showy, and his plotting is both intricate and delicate. His stories are constructed with fine attention to detail, without losing an idea of the entire edifice.

In this book, we meet General Grant as he returns to his childhood home for a visit, and to test some political waters. The visit doesn't quite meet expectations in many ways, and exceeds them, in others. He is immediately plunged into the thick of the mystery the moment the door to his hotel room opens, and that is where we can almost always find him. Were this *only* a mystery, it would be eminently readable, but it is more. First, it is a historical novel, and the atmosphere and setting are meticulously drawn, though they remain, as they should, background to the unfolding tale. they are the scene canvas in front of which the action takes place, and yet, the characters are influenced by their time and place, as are we. Mr. Marks gives us a true sense of what things were like, and how people thought, just after the Civil War, including the passions raised by the assassination of President Lincoln. People act in ways that would have been appropriate then, whether they would be so now, or not, and I think that is important. In addition, the characters are well developed, and extremely human. We see a General doubt himself, doubt his abilities in certain areas, and fight with his demons, both emotional and psychological. We see how his neighbors, friends, rivals, and mentors react to the man he has become, and how they deal, or don't, with his success.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I was sort of in a new zone on this book as I admire US Grant from the Civil War but as a mystery slueth? I was pleasantly surprised as the story is logical and follows a believable path in history. The weaving of the Grant family into the story made it seem more like non fiction, which I normally read. A good who dun-it as I did not solve until the end. Looks like the start of a good series.
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