Timothy L O'Brien
September 2012/ ISBN: 0345496779
by Cheryl Green
A month after
the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, Temple McFadden, a police
detective for the Metropolitan Police Department, is on the way
to meet two friends to help with a shipment arriving at the B&O
Railway Station. He sees Stump Tigani, a man who was a courier during
the war, being attacked. By the time Temple reaches him, Stump is
dead, but Temple finds a package on his person, which he removes.
Temple has to flee on horseback and stuffs the package down his
boots. Much later, a wounded Temple has found safety at the Foggy
Bottom home of his friend, Pint. The package Temple has been carrying
is really two journals or diaries written by a man and a woman.
What do they have in common? Abraham Lincoln.
There are a
number of people who will go to great lengths to get their hands
on these diaries. I especially enjoyed having real people such as
Mary Todd Lincoln, Sojourner Truth, Allen Pinkerton and Edwin Stanton,
to name a few, make cameos in the novel. We are taken on a tour
of the city of Washington, D.C., from bordellos to the White House,
from Georgetown to back alley shanties. Mr O'Brien has recreated
a time that you can almost see, hear and smell.
McFadden's wife, has a big part is the story, too. One moment she
is saving a life and the next she is getting rid of a man tailing
her by chloroforming him in the Smithsonian Castle building. There
is a lot of skullduggery and backstabbing going on, and Temple McFadden
is going to figure out just who really is behind the conspiracy
to assassinate the President. Escaping the watchful eye of Allen
Pinkerton is just one of the many twists and turns this books takes.
At the back of the diary written by the man is a section that is
coded. Temple just knows that if he and Augustus can decode the
messages, they will have the answers - if they don't get killed
has written a wonderfully researched novel. It is a real page turner
and I couldn't put it down. If you like your political thrillers
with a historical edge, then this is the book for you.