Getting around saintly Abe

I think I’ve mentioned I’m mulling a Civil War novel, so it’ll come as no surprise that I need to know about Lincoln.

As a proponent of non-violence and one pretty deeply cynical about politicians the higher up the food chain they’ve risen, I have to come to terms with every player on the national scene whose actions led to the deaths of so many young boys, and that includes Honest Abe.

A People’s History of the Civil War has been helpful so far.

I’m also considering buying The Real Lincoln, though I have a feeling I wouldn’t agree about much politically with the author, and the book is being (has been) slammed for shoddy research and misrepresentation, selective quotations, that kind of thing.

Still, as fiction writers, we get to put together composites of folks out of the oddest bits of string and batting. 

Lincoln was a complex Joe, so why not, yes, give him the saintly side, but also give him a good slam of the obverse perspective?

Robert Devereaux

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