Book Drunkard

“I am simply a 'book drunkard.' Books have the same irresistible temptation for me that liquor has for its devotee. I cannot withstand them.” L.M. Montgomery

Hanging Mary by Susan Higginbotham, review

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In 1864 Washington, one has to be careful with talk of secession. Better to speak only when in the company of the trustworthy, like Mrs. Surratt. A widow who runs a small boarding house, Mary Surratt isn’t half as committed to the cause as her son, Johnny. If he’s not escorting veiled spies, he’s inviting home men like John Wilkes Booth, the actor who is even more charming in person than he is on the stage. But when President Lincoln is killed, the question of what Mary knew becomes more important than anything else.

Based on the true history of Mary Surratt, Hanging Mary reveals the untold story of those on the other side of the assassin’s gun.


HANGING MARY by Susan Higginbotham is the heart wrenching account of Mary Surratt’s “involvement”  in the assassination of President Lincoln.  It’s told from the perspective of Mary herself and also from one of her boarders, a young woman named Nora.  Since some people may not be familiar with Mary and the outcome of her trial, I won’t be posting any spoilers in this review.

I’ve read other books by this author is the past and thought they were good.  This book, however, is absolutely fantastic.  I was completely engrossed from the very first chapter, and even though I do happen to know the outcome, I couldn’t wait to reach the end of the story to see how it would all pan out.  All the usual suspects are included from John Wilkes Booth to Lewis Powell, John Surratt to Louis Weichmann.  The tale is well played out on the pages with vivid descriptions of surroundings  and real life characters who are portrayed perfectly.

With stirring prose that will keep you hooked until the very last page, I give HANGING MARY 5 stars *****.

*I received an e-copy of this book from Sourcebooks Landmark via Netgalley in exchange for my honest review*

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