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Monday, November 14, 2011

My Amazon Review of Bill O'Reilly's History of Lincoln

Update II: Amazon finally published my revised review of Bill O'Reilly's "Killing Lincoln: The Shocking Assassination that Changed America Forever." Please consider casting a "helpful" vote for it. I'd like to continue my string of having the "Most Helpful 'Favorable" Reviews" of books written by patriots, blah, blah, blah...

Here's the revised review (scroll down to see the original review they rejected):
4.0 out of 5 stars A History of "Should Have Beens", November 13, 2011
By
Gen. JC Christian, patriot (Tremonton, UT United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Killing Lincoln: The Shocking Assassination that Changed America Forever (Hardcover)

There are many who criticize "Killing Lincoln" as "sloppy history," "a long, rather boring, string of lies," or "an ahistorical vanity project foisted on a passionately credulous fan base by an egomaniacal serial prevaricator." I think it's more than that. It's the culmination of a lifetime of effort on Mr. O'Reilly's part to establish a new kind of truth, a truth based more on what one man believes "should have been" rather than such unreliable things as facts.

Despite it's many errors, I believe it to be one of the greatest historical works of all time. Forget Barbara Tuchman, Arthur Schlesinger, Jr., and Rick Perlstein; "Killing Lincoln" confirms O'Reilly as the greatest historian since Melvin Dummar.

It's all there: the burning of Ford's theater a year later than records indicate, the first confirmation that Lee stood Grant up after surrendering at Appomattox, and the hundreds of other "should have beens" O'Reilly so boldly proclaims within this book.

Unfortunately, I cannot give "Killing Lincoln" five stars. O'Reilly leaves out too many great "should have beens" that would of added immensely to the book. Lincoln would have appeared to be a much greater man had he won two Peabody Awards for journalism and was born in Leavittown.

Additionally, it would have made for much spicier reading had O'Reilly claimed that Abraham "The Factor" Lincoln had "courted" Harriet Beecher Stowe by sending her late night, laudanum-fueled telegraph messages or added chapters on Lincoln's love for 7" Loofa Sponges and Professional Falafel Scoop Scooper tools. That's something all great men do.

And where are the claims that William H. Seward was a filthy communist hippy or that Edwin M. Stanton was secretly allied with Hitler? One has to wonder if the publisher exercised a bit too much editorial control.

Hopefully, Mr. O'Reilly will not allow such criticisms to dissuade him from writing additional histories. Like that other great historian, Baron Karl von Münchhausen, he may not receive the accolades he deserves during his lifetime, but his legacy will be timeless.
Update: Amazon rejected my review (that's a first, they usually wait until I reach "most helpful" status). I'll try rewriting it.

I've submitted my review of Bill O'Reilly's "Killing Lincoln: The Shocking Assassination that Changed America Forever" to Amazon. Once it gets posted, you can see it here. Please consider casting a "helpful" vote for it. I'd like to continue my string of having the "Most Helpful 'Favorable" Reviews" of books written by patriots. This one will be tough to do given the lateness of my submission, so I'd appreciate any help you can provide.
4.0 out of 5 stars An O'Reilly Kind of Truth, November 13, 2011
By
Gen. JC Christian, patriot (Tremonton, UT United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Killing Lincoln: The Shocking Assassination that Changed America Forever (Hardcover)

There are many who criticize "Killing Lincoln" as "sloppy history," "a long, rather boring, string of lies," or "an ahistorical vanity project foisted on a passionately credulous fan base by an egomaniacal serial prevaricator." I think it's more than that. It's the culmination of a lifetime of effort on Mr. O'Reilly's part to establish a new kind of truth, a truth based more on what one man believes should have been rather than such unreliable things as facts.

Sure, it may not be "true" that Lincoln won two Peabody Awards for journalism or was born in Leavittown, but, by gosh, it should be.

Yes, maybe it's a stretch to claim the President "courted" Harriet Beecher Stowe by sending her late night, laudanum-fueled telegraph messages describing certain unnatural acts that can be conducted using a variety of tubers and other garden vegetables. It may also be hard to believe that Honest Abe used a falafel to lather a showering Miss Sarah Bernhard. But, certainly, those are things that a great man, a man like Abraham "The Factor" Lincoln, would do.

As for claims that Lincoln rival William H. Seward was a filthy communist hippy or that Edwin M. Stanton was secretly allied with Hitler, well, only a filthy communist Nazi hippy would question such obviously true facts.

Hopefully, Mr. O'Reilly will not allow such criticisms to dissuade him from writing additional histories. Like that other great historian, Baron Karl von Münchhausen, he may not receive the accolades he deserves during his lifetime, but his legacy will be timeless.

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