Assassin

Assassin

4.3 24
by Anna Myers
     
 

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Would you betray your president to win the heart of America's most celebrated actor?

Bella isn't evil. But even people with good intentions can end up doing bad things. Especially when they meet people with the power to persuade them to do almost anything, like John Wilkes Booth--the most charismatic and famous actor of his time.

So when Booth sets his sights

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Overview

Would you betray your president to win the heart of America's most celebrated actor?

Bella isn't evil. But even people with good intentions can end up doing bad things. Especially when they meet people with the power to persuade them to do almost anything, like John Wilkes Booth--the most charismatic and famous actor of his time.

So when Booth sets his sights on Bella, an assistant seamstress to Mary Todd Lincoln, to help with his plot to kidnap President Lincoln, he is able to persuade her to betray her president and even turn her back on the boy she has loved her entire life. Bella believes Booth is only trying to force the North to release Southern war prisoners, and will not harm her dear friend Mr. Lincoln. But the kidnapping plot fails, and now Booth will stop at nothing--even if it means harming Bella in the process.

Anna Myers has crafted a provocative new look at the Lincoln assassination through the eyes of both a young White House insider and the assassin himself. An author's note provides the historical background to this tragic event.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
"I am not evil." maintains a shy Arabella Getchel. Nevertheless, her infatuation with the ruthless and insane John Wilkes Booth as he plots to kidnap and eventually assassinate the president nearly ravaged her youthful being. Wilkes (as he preferred to be called) and Bella alternate roles in this historical novel that reveals happenings in each character's early life, similarities and differences in their personal history, and involvement in Lincoln's murder from the point of view of the killer and the teen. Bella was just eight when their paths first crossed at a Richmond theater. Their mutual love for the stage and her ensuing adoration of the most charismatic and famous actor of his time were further intertwined with her position as a seamstress for Mary Todd Lincoln. Her position eventually gave rise to a White House passport for the slayer's scheme. The accurate drama is enhanced as the fictitious fourteen-year-old girl's tale serves as a mirror that reflects the well-researched people, events, and surroundings of that period in history, including Lincoln's presidency and the Civil War. The author effectively chronicles the lessons of where our country has been in time, and expertly weaves broad personal accounts of lives affected by the tragic events. Readers will quickly become involved in a blend of romance, mystery, and intrigue. 2005, Walker & Company, Ages 11 to 16.
—Barbara Troisi
School Library Journal
Gr 7 Up-Through the device of a fictional young woman interacting with historical figures, Meyers provides readers with a glimpse of the people, events, and surroundings of a dramatic time in history In alternating chapters, John Wilkes Booth and Arabella Getchel, a 14-year-old White House seamstress, relate the story. Booth's unstable emotional state is revealed in his zealous passion for the Confederacy and intense hatred of the Union as symbolized by President Lincoln. The novel offers a good opportunity for discussion about the assassin, his motivations, and, in this case, how he drew an unsuspecting girl into his scheme. An author's note delineates truth from fiction.-Denise Moore, O'Gorman Junior High School, Sioux Falls, SD Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Two stories become one as an odd confluence of events places 14-year-old Bella Getchel, assistant seamstress to Mary Todd Lincoln, under the influence of Wilkes Booth, famous actor and "the most handsome man in America." Booth is confident of his ability to seduce women, and he uses Bella in his plot to kidnap the president and hold him in exchange for all Southern men held in Northern prisons. With notions of romance, saving her father, helping the South and performing on stage at Ford's Theater all mixed up in her head, Bella agrees to spy on Mr. Lincoln, using her easy access to the White House in her role. Alternating first-person narratives effectively build tension as the two stories develop and intersect at the theater. Arabella Getchel is a fictitious character who provides an original spin on this important episode in history. A fine companion to recent nonfiction works such as James Giblin's Good Brother, Bad Brother (p. 539) and Harold Holzer's The President is Shot! (2004). (author's note) (Historical fiction. 12+)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781439555279
Publisher:
Baker & Taylor, CATS
Publication date:
10/01/2008
Pages:
212
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.75(d)

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