53 pages 1 hour read

James L. Swanson

Chasing Lincoln's Killer

Nonfiction | Book | Adult | Published in 2009

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Teacher Introduction

Chasing Lincoln's Killer

  • Genre: Nonfiction; history; true crime
  • Originally Published: 2009
  • Reading Level/Interest: Lexile 980L; Grades 5-10
  • Structure/Length: fast-paced narrative divided into multiple chapters; approximately 197 pages; audiobook length approximately 3 hours and 57 minutes
  • Central Concern: Chasing Lincoln’s Killer is a young adult adaptation of James L. Swanson’s bestseller Manhunt. It chronicles the 12-day pursuit and capture of John Wilkes Booth, Abraham Lincoln’s assassin. Swanson provides a day-by-day account of Booth’s escape, the frantic search by federal agents, and the nation’s mourning for the fallen president. The book is meticulously researched, offering vivid details and insights into this pivotal event in American history. It captures the tension and drama of the search, delving into the motivations of Booth and the impact of Lincoln’s assassination on the country.
  • Potential Sensitivity Issues: Descriptions of the assassination; discussions of murder and the historical context of the Civil War era, including slavery and political conflict

James L. Swanson, Author

  • Bio: Born 1959; an American author and historian specializing in US legal and constitutional history, the history of the Civil War, and Lincoln’s assassination. Swanson’s writing is known for its detailed narrative style
  • Other Works: Manhunt: The 12-Day Chase for Lincoln's Killer (2006); Bloody Crimes: The Chase for Jefferson Davis and the Death Pageant for Lincoln’s Corpse (2010); End of Days: The Assassination of John F.