Some New Trend


Sine coffea nihil sum :: Assassination Vacation by Kevin Wilder

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assassinationvacation

BOOK REVIEW :: BY KEVIN WILDER

“Going to Ford’s Theater to watch the play is like going to Hooters for the food.”

“Like Lincoln, I would like to believe the ballot is stronger than the bullet. Then again, he said that before he got shot.”

“You know you’ve reached a new plateau of group mediocrity when even a Canadian is alarmed by your lack of individuality.”

Wow! Who knew assassinations could be this much fun? (*Correction: Who knew learning about assassinations could be this much fun. -Ed.)

Sarah Vowell, in addition to being one of America’s favorite cultural critics and social observers, happens to be an authority on the subject. During the introduction, she speaks of her obsession with presidential deaths, and how nearly every conversation somehow lead to this topic. It’s her expertise and sense of humor, combined with what might be the world’s most adorable voice, that make Assassination Vacation a total winner.

Maybe like me you’ve been to Ford’s theater. But did you know that Abe’s son Robert Todd Lincoln happened to be nearby when a total of three presidential deaths occurred? Also, did anyone ever tell you that President Garfield’s assassin was part of a weird nineteenth-century vegetarian sex cult? Vowell’s here to inform us this, along with a lot more. The anecdotes associated with her travels to these historical sites also occasionally make their way into this book, since after all, it is a vacation.

I recommend the audiobook, that way you’ll get to hear the original music. And even better, voices for former presidents and tour guides are provided by people like Dave Eggers, Jon Stewart, Catherine Keener, Stephen King, Conan O’Brien, and several others. How do you beat that?

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