Historical Background And Point Of View

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Authorial/Historical Background and Point-of-View Fittingly born on Abraham Lincoln’s birthday, James L. Swanson has always had a fascination of our 16th president’s life. At only ten years old, Swanson’s grandmother gave him a very peculiar gift for a child: “a framed engraving of Booth’s Deringer pistol, along with an April 15, 1865 Chicago Tribune clipping.” The newspaper story he received relived the terrible day of Lincoln’s death, but as Swanson read, he realized the ending of the story was lost. Swanson was fascinated, and felt a need to know the fate of his favorite president, and the hunt for knowledge began. As the author continues to recount in his acknowledgements, that gift sparked a passion within him culminating with the publication of Manhunt on 2006. Despite the author’s obvious enjoyment of the subject, a resurgence of interest in the life and death of Honest Abe has recently gripped the United States. In the twenty-first century so far, dozens of novels, including Abraham Lincoln: A Life, The Gettysburg Gospel: The Lincoln Speech That Nobody Knows, and Swanson’s own Manhunt have gripped the nation, some of them being New York Times Bestsellers. Even the film business has profited by this surge of attention with 2012’s Lincoln starring Daniel Day Lewis. This interest is in part due to the political divide plaguing the United States in the stark contrasts of opinion between Republicans and Democrats. Abraham Lincoln saved the country from the biggest

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