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A Necessary End Kindle Edition
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"The day after the election, I decided it was time to begin planning this capture plot we'd discussed in Montreal. So I went to Nettie Colburn Maynard, the Lincolns' spiritualist, to get information on his whereabouts. Not for any other reason," he emphasized sternly. "But during the very first visit, strange things started happening to me. She went into trance and conjured up what she believes is a spirit who's been haunting me ever since, haunting me in the hotel room, backstage at the theater, everywhere. I've had this recurring dream where I'm in ancient times, Rome or some old place like that, everybody dressed in tunics, and they're waiting for me so we can murder somebody. And in real life, I'm constantly looking over my shoulder, feeling someone behind me. It's all very unnerving. Some days, I can barely get through." He paused for a sip.
Sam hunched forward, anticipating every word.
Booth went on, "I began to think there was something to all the mumbo-jumbo. It even started to bother Alice. She feels cold drafts in the room and sees things moving about like I do. It's not just me going loony. And now I'm convinced someone from the spirit world is after me to do this deed to Lincoln, and won't leave me alone until I do."
This is John Wilkes Booth's conversation with his childhood friend Samuel Arnold. Arnold, David E. Herold, Mary Surratt and a few other handpicked friends and acquaintances were all responsible for several failed attempts to kidnap President Abraham Lincoln. Most of their attempts were foiled by actress Alice Grey. Gray was solicited by Senator John Parker Hale to help protect the president by acting as a spy against Booth. What neither of them expected was for her to fall in love with Booth and even more unexpectedly was for Booth to fall in love with Gray. His love for her was so great that he asked her to marry him.
With all attempts to kidnap Lincoln failing, the surrender of Lee and the ending of the war, Gray knew Booth would give up his attempts allowing them to lead a normal life. But as history proves, that was simply not to be.
I've always had a fondness for certain eras of history, the 1800s being one. Reading the John Wilkes Booth story was like stepping back into time for me. A lot of what I read, I know from reading the history books to be declared as being true. I had read that Booth was an actor, that he was at one time engaged to Lucy Hale, the daughter of Senator Hale. Reading history books told me that Mrs. Lincoln was heavy into mediums and spiritualists in hopes of contacting her two deceased sons. And I may have even read somewhere that Booth kept a diary. So, the writing of A Necessary End was a pleasure in reading for me. I've always said that if the history novels written by John Jakes were to be made into history books, kids would enjoy history and learn more. I feel the same way about A Necessary End's author Diana Rubino. She has made reading the history of this event enjoyable.
Now I leave you with one question. Did John Wilkes Booth really die in that burning Garrett tobacco barn or did he escape to live a ripe old age?
A bit of the paranormal meets history with a dash of "Romeo and Juliet" thrown in to make for a page-turning story. Ms. Rubino knows her history, and she writes entertaining works, one right after the other. A Necessary End does not disappoint.
Historical characters are brought to vivid life in this story. The reader gets a behind-the-scenes look into Booth and the action that made him infamous. What things happened, slowly pushing him toward his radical decision to kill Lincoln?
Ms. Rubino's story explores all of the above in a way that is memorable. Even though we all know the inevitable ending concerning Lincoln, suspense is still created, and tension is high until the last page. This book is highly recommended to both lovers of historical fiction and the paranormal.
I won’t put in any spoilers, but the plot basically revolves around John Wilkes Booth (Lincoln’s assassin) and we get large parts of the story from his point of view. Booth, who is known as “Wilkes” to his friends, is haunted by an evil spirit who had connections to Booth in a past life, and intentions for Wilkes to carry out diabolical plans in this one. The author skillfully interweaves one period of history (Civil War-era) with another (Ancient Rome) and ties everything together with an intriguing mystery and a good dose of psychological suspense. The details on setting and character were so well done that I literally felt like I was on the streets of nineteenth-century Washington D.C. and could see and smell the horse-drawn carriages, the smoky saloons, and President Lincoln’s shabby, run-down White House. This author obviously did a ton of research for this book because there were so many little details inserted here and there that were just fantastic about the time period.
I will definitely be checking out other books by this writer, as I believe she’s done a couple of other time-travel novels and I bet they’re amazing. Would strongly recommend this one to anyone interested in history, quality fiction, or thriller/suspense.
Diana Rubino is a master at pulling you into the events that led up to the assassination with all the details she professionally researched. A great read, but don't think you can guess how it ends.
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