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CBR4 #47: Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter by Seth Grahame-Smith

I'm not sure why it surprised me to find out that the guy who is responsible for Pride & Prejudice & Zombies is a graduate of my alma mater. To be honest, it actually makes perfect sense--that kind of weirdness is one of Emerson's keystones. In Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, the author once again turns preconcieved notions on their ears.

This story is about a side of our sixteenth president that is rarely spoken of: his lifelong quest to hunt and destroy vampires. Beginning as a child when a vampire killed his beloved mother, young Abraham trains for what he sees as his life's purpose: to be a hunter of the undead. He joins up with a moral vampire, who helps him reach his potential and seek out the most ruthless bloodsuckers to slay. He also begins his political career, starting his rise toward the highest office in the land.

In AL:VH, Grahame-Smith takes on a more difficult task. Instead of inserting new things into a pre-existing work, he's written something entirely new. However, it's clear that he's also done some extensive research into the life of Abraham Lincoln. Excluding the vampirey bits, the context surrounding the story is all correct, as far as I know.

It's an interesting lens through which to view a man who was in real life a hero. The story is well-written, and the character of Lincoln is extremely empathetic.

I haven't had a chance to see the movie of this yet, though I suspect I'll probably be disappointed. (I much prefer seeing a movie first, and then discovering the book--it tends to improve on a good experience, rather than make an initially good experience a let-down.)

Last but not least, if what I've read of him and his sense of humor is true, I think Abraham Lincoln probably would have found this book just as entertaining as I did.

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