The Lincoln Conspiracy by Timothy L. O'Brien
A Novel

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A nation shattered by its president’s murder
Two diaries that reveal the true scope of an American conspiracy
A detective determined to bring the truth to light, no matter what it costs him
From award-winning journalist Timothy L. O’Brien comes a gripping historical thriller that poses a provocative question: What if the plot to assassinate President Lincoln was wider and more sinister than we ever imagined?
In late spring of 1865, as America mourns the death of its leader, Washington, D.C., police detective Temple McFadden makes a startling discovery. Strapped to the body of a dead man at the B&O Railroad station are two diaries, two documents that together reveal the true depth of the Lincoln conspiracy. Securing the diaries will put Temple’s life in jeopardy—and will endanger the fragile peace of a nation still torn by war.
Temple’s quest to bring the conspirators to justice takes him on a perilous journey through the gaslit streets of the Civil War–era capital, into bawdy houses and back alleys where ruthless enemies await him in every shadowed corner. Aided by an underground network of friends—and by his wife, Fiona, a nurse who possesses a formidable arsenal of medicinal potions—Temple must stay one step ahead of Lafayette Baker, head of the Union Army’s spy service. Along the way, he’ll run from or rely on Edwin Stanton, Lincoln’s fearsome secretary of war; the legendary Scottish spymaster Allan Pinkerton; abolitionist Sojourner Truth; the photographer Alexander Gardner; and many others.
Bristling with twists and building to a climax that will leave readers gasping, The Lincoln Conspiracy offers a riveting new account of what truly motivated the assassination of one of America’s most beloved presidents—and who participated in the plot to derail the train of liberty that Lincoln set in motion.

“History as a dangerous, inventive game. Fascinating.”—Martin Cruz Smith
“The Lincoln Conspiracy is a hell of a good read. It's an exciting thriller full of believable characters and absorbing history, and the end result is a page-turning blend of research and imagination.”—David Liss

From the Hardcover edition.

About Timothy L. O'Brien

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Timothy L. O'Brien is the executive editor at the Huffington Post, where he edited the 2012 Pulitzer Prize-winning series about severely wounded war veterans, "Beyond the Battlefield." Prior to joining the Huffington Post he was a reporter and editor at The New York Times, where helped oversee "The Reckoning," a series about the financial crisis that was a Pulitzer Prize finalist in 2009. A graduate of Georgetown University, he holds three master's degrees-in U.S. History, Business, and Journalism-from Columbia University. He lives in Montclair, New Jersey, with his wife and two children.
Published September 18, 2012 by Ballantine Books. 370 pages
Genres: History, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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Huffington Post national editor O’Brien (TrumpNation, 2005) ventures into fiction in this historical thriller, featuring an 1865 detective digging into the murder of Abraham Lincoln.

Aug 29 2012 | Read Full Review of The Lincoln Conspiracy: A Novel

Publishers Weekly

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When Washington, D.C., police detective Temple McFadden retrieves a package carried by a courier he knows shortly after the man’s throat is cut at the B&O train station, McFadden is stunned to discover that it contains two diaries—one written by the just widowed Mary Todd Lincoln, and the oth...

Jul 16 2012 | Read Full Review of The Lincoln Conspiracy: A Novel

Book Reporter

Washington, DC Metropolitan Police detective Temple McFadden is on his way to the B&O Railroad station where he plans to meet with a Negro friend Augustus and another friend, this one of more questionable honor, named Pint.

Oct 05 2012 | Read Full Review of The Lincoln Conspiracy: A Novel

Look At OKC

In “The Lincoln Conspiracy” (Ballantine, $26), Timothy O'Brien offers a new twist on history and introduces a sleuth readers might hope to see again.

Nov 04 2012 | Read Full Review of The Lincoln Conspiracy: A Novel

State Journal-Register

This is an advance review of "The Lincoln Conspiracy" (Random House), a novel by Timothy L.

Jul 17 2012 | Read Full Review of The Lincoln Conspiracy: A Novel

A pair of diaries found on a dead body at the B & O Railroad Station leads detective Temple McFadden down a winding path of conspiracy, power struggles, and murderous motives. Temple and his intelligent and resourceful wife, Fiona, encounter a slew of well-known, historical figures of the era as ...

Apr 01 2013 | Read Full Review of The Lincoln Conspiracy: A Novel

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