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Anyone read this historical fiction book about "Booth and the four women who kept his perilous confidence" (His mother, sister Asia, Lucy Hale and Mary Surratt)

Since it's historical fiction I probably won't read it, but it has some good reviews, written by the popular author of Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker & Mrs. Lincoln's Rival

https://www.amazon.com/Fates-Traitors-No...266&sr=1-8
(03-23-2018 11:47 AM)Gene C Wrote: [ -> ]Anyone read this historical fiction book about "Booth and the four women who kept his perilous confidence" (His mother, sister Asia, Lucy Hale and Mary Surratt)

Since it's historical fiction I probably won't read it, but it has some good reviews, written by the popular author of Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker & Mrs. Lincoln's Rival

https://www.amazon.com/Fates-Traitors-No...266&sr=1-8


We debated it for the Surratt gift shop, but decided to wait because it is a historical novel, and there were quite a few of those being churned out at the time it seemed. However, I did invite the author to speak at last year's conference, and she turned me down... That had nothing to do with us selling her book, but it might have been the reason she turned me down.
Gene: I read this book when it first came out, so it’s been awhile. But I remember that I didn’t care much for it. The author (Jennifer Chiaverini) writes novelized accounts of many historical figures I’m interested in—Mary Lincoln and Elizabeth Keckley, Julia Grant, Kate Chase. So I always read them, yet, I’m always disappointed afterward. It must be her writing style. It just doesn’t work for me, personally.

In “Fates and Traitors” she spends a lot of pages on Mary Ann Booth and Lucy Hale; not as many on Asia Booth and Mary Surratt. Her portrait of Mary Ann Booth was sympathetic. Asia Booth came across as an Angry Young Woman (which she may well have been). Lucy Hale was portrayed as a naïve, goody-two-shoes ninny. And many of her scenes seemed to be based on the goofy “facts” about Lucy that are all over the internet, including the infamous (and patently false) eye witness account of “Mrs. Temple” that was published in the newspapers in the 1870’s.

Mary Surratt’s story got the fewest pages, but that was okay because I’m not sure she really belonged in this book. The full title is “Fates and Traitors: A Novel of John Wilkes Booth and the Women Who Loved Him”. Did Mary Surratt LOVE Booth? If the author wanted four female characters, she might have done better to include Ella Starr Turner instead of Mrs. Surratt.

Bottom line: The book is okay for what it is, but for those of us who are really interested in the history of the assassination, it’s kind of a disappointment.
I do remember that we questioned why Mary Surratt was included. It reminded us of that horrible paperback of the 1970s or 80s, The Woman Who Loved John Wilkes Booth by Pamela Redford. It ranked right up there with The Lincoln Conspiracy that was published near that same time (and after the equally dreadful movie came out). Not worth the paper it was written on.
That's another one I can scratch of my wish list.

The Amazon web site indicates it's critically acclaimed.
Does that mean it is no good, but she sold a lot of copies to a gullible public?

https://www.amazon.com/woman-loved-John-...105&sr=8-1
There is a well-researched, non-fiction version of the same theme that is hot off the press, and I believe it will debut at the Surratt conference in two weeks. It is written by Surratt Society member Ernie Abel. We just rec'd a shipment yesterday, and I will announce the details shortly, including information as to how to purchase a copy after our conference on the weekend of April 6-8. Ernie will be signing at the Authors' Hour of the conference.

Another book that might interest some is Avenging Lincoln's Death by Professor Thomas J. Reed. It is another analysis of the 1865 Conspiracy Trial, but with some interesting twists and opinions. This one is selling in hard cover on Amazon for $79, but Surratt House waited until it came out in paperback in order to be able to offer it for $35 -- still a bit high (one of those university presses...). Reed will be speaking at the conference also and signing during the Authors' Hour
(03-24-2018 10:04 AM)L Verge Wrote: [ -> ]There is a well-researched, non-fiction version of the same theme that is hot off the press, and I believe it will debut at the Surratt conference in two weeks. It is written by Surratt Society member Ernie Abel. We just rec'd a shipment yesterday, and I will announce the details shortly, including information as to how to purchase a copy after our conference on the weekend of April 6-8. Ernie will be signing at the Authors' Hour of the conference.

Another book that might interest some is Avenging Lincoln's Death by Professor Thomas J. Reed. It is another analysis of the 1865 Conspiracy Trial, but with some interesting twists and opinions. This one is selling in hard cover on Amazon for $79, but Surratt House waited until it came out in paperback in order to be able to offer it for $35 -- still a bit high (one of those university presses...). Reed will be speaking at the conference also and signing during the Authors' Hour

E. Lawrence Abel's new book is entitled John Wilkes Booth and the Women Who Loved Him. It will be available on Amazon after April 9, but you can pre-order now for $27.20. I'll announce the Surratt House price this week, and I hope we can come close to competing with Amazon -- we need the money more than they do!
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