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Bloody Crimes

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About the Author

James Swanson is the Edgar Award-winning author of the New York Times bestsellers Manhunt and its sequel, Bloody Crimes.


Swanson, Edgar Award-winner for his best-selling Manhunt: The 12-Day Chase for Lincoln's Killer, now brilliantly reveals how, when Abraham Lincoln and Jefferson Davis each relinquished executive power in April 1865, one as a result of assassination and the other through military defeat, they set in motion two enduring myths-the legend of the Union's emancipating, secular saint and the South's cult of the Lost Cause. Lincoln's assassination, national mourning, and funeral pageant, and Davis's manhunt, imprisonment, exoneration, release, and long postwar life, insists Swanson, continue to unsettle Civil War and Reconstruction historiography, not to mention American society, to this very day. Despite an artful job of portraying the rebel president of the Confederate States of America in a benign light, Swanson concludes that the 20th and 21st centuries belong to Lincoln, not Davis, whose legacy of favoring sectionalism and slavery has been lost through time, much as his beloved Beauvoir plantation was swept away during the Katrina disaster of 2005. Verdict Swanson successfully fuses the strengths of historical integrity, balance, and masterful prose into one compelling work. Bloody Crimes should be required reading for every American. [See Prepub Alert, LJ 1/10.]-John Carver Edwards, Univ. of Georgia Libs., Cleveland (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

"Gripping - sometimes even gruesome - and heartrending.... Brilliant." -- USA Today
"With the publication of Bloody Crimes, James L. Swanson emerges as one of America's greatest historians. Swanson recounts the closing drama of the Civil War with hair-raising precision and the vivid narrative drive of a top-tier novelist. A grand tour de force!" -- Douglas Brinkley, author of The Wilderness Warrior: Theodore Roosevelt and the Crusade for America
"James Swanson is a master storyteller. Bloody Crimes is not only a thoroughly terrific read; it is a valuable contribution to history. Swanson's brilliant decision to weave together the final days of Abraham Lincoln and Jefferson Davis provides fresh and compelling insights on both familiar figures." -- Doris Kearns Goodwin, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln
"Striking ....Full of vigorous prose and dynamic stories about the period immediately following the end of the Civil War." -- Kirkus Reviews
"Swanson's account of Lincoln's death pageant is moving, but Davis' flight lends the book enough suspense to drive a Hollywood thriller.. . Swanson knows how to keep his audience breathlessly entertained. It's Davis' surprising turn as a tragic figure in Bloody Crimes, however, that might prove most memorable." -- Richmond Times-Dispatch
"Page-turning....Swanson again creates page-turning suspense out of historical events. . . .Gripping.... Swanson has the gift to make [history] compelling." -- Associated Press
"A haunting masterpiece. James Swanson has written a thrilling book of death and longing, of defeat and resurrection." -- Harlan Coben, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Caught and Tell No One
"A brilliant narrative that keeps the reader spellbound from beginning to end. James Swanson's vivid style and historical accuracy are unsurpassed, and he makes the parallel journeys of Abraham Lincoln and Jefferson Davis come magically alive. I wish I had written this book." -- Edward Steers, Jr., author of Blood on the Moon: The Assassination of Abraham Lincoln and The Lincoln Assassination Encyclopedia
"James Swanson is a giant. With his instant classic Manhunt, and its triumphant follow up Bloody Crimes, Swanson proves beyond all doubt that he is a master of historical true-crime epic.....Bloody Crimes is irresistibly captivating. I highly recommend it." -- Vincent Bugliosi, Edgar award-winning author of Helter Skelter and Reclaiming History: The Assassination of President John F. Kennedy
"James Swanson has done it again. Bloody Crimes is a moving, evocative trip back in time to the tumultuous spring of 1865. Swanson's meticulous research and sparkling prose make it an essential companion to his award winning bestseller, Manhunt." -- Michael Burlingame, author of Abraham Lincoln: A Life

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