I’m not that big a fan of historical fiction, but I devour thrillers on a regular basis. When it’s a thriller based from history, there are very few authors who step up to the plate as brilliant as Steve Berry. I have read a couple of his books before, and after that, I’ve been a fan of his writing.
Abraham Lincoln had a secret, one that would be devastating to the United States, and one which has been passed secretly from President to President. The country is safe, but the secret is not. It falls into the hands of a rogue group of Mormons and things feel like they will spill out of control. Enter Cotton Malone, Cassiopeia Vitt and co. Their job is to stop the group, and for that, Cassiopeia goes undercover. And as usual, things do begin to spin out of control, leaving Cotton to solve the dilemma.
What works in the tale is the thrill. From start to finish, the book entertains. The letter that is passed from President to President felt almost real. A power packed start, an informative, kind of deep middle segment and then a power packed finish. I couldn’t ask for more. Apart from the thrill of the quest to save the world, Berry throws in a romantic angle, one that comes between Cotton and Cassiopeia and threatens the duo’s chemistry that we’ve known and come to love from previous works in the series. The characters are well thought, and the research for the background story is detailed. What doesn’t quite sit for me is the middle segment. To bring the reader into the background story, the pace of the tale is somewhat compromised. While it doesn’t go to the lengths of being boring, it still feels a little heavy. And the undercover role of Cassiopeia felt difficult to believe.
While I wouldn’t say this is Berry’s best work, it’s not a flop, and definitely holds merit with the plot.
Title: The Lincoln Myth
Series: Cotton Malone #9
Author: Steve Berry
Genre: Historical Thriller
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton / Hachette India
Price: INR 399
(28th November 2014)