New York Times bestselling author of The Wordy Shipmates and contributor to NPRs This American Life Sarah Vowell embarks on a road trip to sites of political violence, from Washington DC to Alaska, to better understand our nations ever evolving political system and history.Sarah Vowell exposes the glorious conundrums of American history and culture with wit, probity, and an irreverent sense of humor With Assassination Vacation, she takes us on a road trip like no other a journey to the pit stops of American political murder and through the myriad ways they have been used for fun and profit, for political and cultural advantage From Buffalo to Alaska, Washington to the Dry Tortugas, Vowell visits locations immortalized and influenced by the spilling of politically important blood, reporting as she goes with her trademark blend of wisecracking humor, remarkable honesty, and thought provoking criticism We learn about the jinx that was Robert Todd Lincoln present at the assassinations of Presidents Lincoln, Garfield, and McKinley and witness the politicking that went into the making of the Lincoln Memorial The resulting narrative is much than an entertaining and informative travelogue it is the disturbing and fascinating story of how American death has been manipulated by popular culture, including literature, architecture, sculpture, and the author s favorite historical tourism Though the themes of loss and violence are explored and we make detours to see how the Republican Party became the Republican Party, there are all kinds of lighter diversions along the way into the lives of the three presidents and their assassins, including mummies, show tunes, mean spirited totem poles, and a nineteenth century biblical sex cult....
|Publisher||:||Simon Reprint edition February 6, 2006|
|Number of Pages||:||258 pages|
|File Size||:||672 KB|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
Assassination Vacation Reviews
Sarah Vowell has a very specific voice that I particularly enjoy. Reading this in December of 2016 created new parallels to her stories and feelings when writing around 2004 and cant wait for her first post election book. Stream of consciousness tidbits and great tangents and spice to the main narrative about the first three assassinations - Lincoln Garfield and McKinley all of which Robert Todd Lincoln was connected to, poor soul. I don't know that I learned much, but boy was it a fun read. Going to see what else she has for me after first starting with her Lafayette book.
I am slowly working my way through Sarah Vowell's books once again and started with my favorite, Assassination Vacation. Like Ms. Vowell, I have always been a fan of American history, especially the more macabre elements. I stumbled upon this book a few years ago on accident, as someone unfamiliar with Sarah's work. I read the book rapidly the first time I read it, just as I read it rapidly this time.
What a bizarre idea for a travel book! Yet so well written it makes me wish I had thought of it. Ms. Vowell has a style that is unique by anyone's standards - simultaneously snarky and sensitive, and ever insightful. There is also just a bit of an edge, appropriate for a country that has managed to kill several of its elected leaders. The book focuses primarily on sites related to the Lincoln assassination - some tenuously so (e.g. the island prison where Dr. Mudd was incarcerated) - weaving her visits in and around a historical narrative that is no less accurate for betraying an ultra-modern hipness. It's the second book of hers I've read, and the best; I eagerly await acquiring the others.
Man, I really wish I had crossed this one off of my to-read list sooner. You see, I enjoy history, but I have a hard time getting into nonfiction books. Most of them are bone dry and deadly dull, in my experience. Wading through the options to find a good one was always excruciating to me.
Quirky impressive. I'm re-reading, so that's an endorsement of sorts.