Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “A Night of Horrors” as Want to Read:
A Night of Horrors
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

A Night of Horrors

3.75  ·  Rating details ·  288 Ratings  ·  37 Reviews
A thriller about the 24 hours leading up to the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. This tightly plotted novel captures the single day when John Booth and his conspirators plot to kill President, VP, and Secretary of State; the Cabinet plans a post-war US; and the Lincolns dream about their future. It builds to the simultaneous and brutal attacks that left lives shattered an ...more
Kindle Edition, 292 pages
Published July 15th 2011 by Telemachus Press, LLC (first published January 1st 2011)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about A Night of Horrors, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about A Night of Horrors

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Richard Wolf
Aug 19, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This book was recommended to me by a long time friend who knew that I would be interested in this "novel" approach to a (the?) defining moment of the 19th century.

The book is a page turner, and gave me insight (real or imagined by the novelist) into the thoughts, fears, and emotions of those involved. It is also a great window to the period, less than 150 years ago. The speech patterns, the mannerisms were well caught by Berry.

My only complaint is the occasional overuse of a word or phrase, but
David Bishop
Jan 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
John Berry's historical novel of the assassination of President Lincoln is a gourmet serving. I often felt I was an invisible companion dragged along beside John Wilkes Booth, reading his mind, but unable to influence his actions as he first planned to capture President Lincoln and General Grant, and later as he reshaped his diabolical plan to the assassination. The manner in which the author used the writings and memoirs of Booth to construct the man's dialogue made it feel like we were actuall ...more
Nov 04, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very riveting story of the day that Abraham Lincoln was assasinated. It is a fictional history of the day. It presented the life of each individual for that day. Booth,Lincoln,Stanton, Seward and the other conspirators. The author uses actual histories with a blend of fiction to make a very interesting book. It again gives a great story of an amazing man in Abraham Lincoln. It also presents John Wilkes Boot as a Confederate who thought his act would pay back for the Conferderacy losing the war. ...more
Donna Peake
Jan 30, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013-books-read
So many people turned down an invite to the Theater from President Lincoln & Mary. Wonder if they knew something was up? Booth seemed to be one crazy man who could charm people into doing what he wanted done.
Lorin Cary
In an era when the President and his family are so closely guarded, it is difficult to look back in time and conceive of how John Wilkes Booth so easily gained access to Lincoln on the evening of April 14, 1865, barely a week after Robert E. Lee’s surrender at Appomattox.

An imaginative and highly detailed tale of Lincoln’s last day and the hours following his death, this ebook by John C. Berry follows Lincoln and John Wilkes Booth in parallel tracks as we follow Lincoln’s assassination on April
Aug 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
I good dramatization of the night Lincoln died. I like when historical fiction is written like this. However, I then have to remind myself that it's historical FICTION and remember that not everything is an accurate retelling. I think this author did a great job with pulling from historic sources, while adding his own narrative for the conspiracy that took place.
Sep 08, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I really wanted to like this book. And I tried. But the author insists on getting in his own way. I do not cast aspersions on his research--that appears excellent, and I plan to raid his bibliography.

However, the research may be one of the problems. Every time the story would start to pick up steam, we would plow into a museum diorama with a chunk of exposition on a plaque. I've done this myself, where I did research and gathered facts and by all the gods of storytelling I was going to *relate*
Feb 22, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It seemed to me that this book takes a somewhat favorable view of Booth. Not insofar as supporting any of his actions, but in describing him as handsome, intelligent, or otherwise describing him as a man committed to his beliefs.

Contrariwise, the Northern side contains more negative statements. Not unreasonable statements, but they did tend towards airing dirty laundry or demonstrating moments of weakness. Mrs. Lincon's obsessive spending, hysterics, social troubles. The Vice President's being
Sep 06, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
nook book This was a rather good non-fiction book--a change from my usual reading fare. There were a few glaring typos and I noticed some repetition of various passages. This might have been to clarify what was happening, or the author may have been padding the book out since it concerns only 24 hours. There was much detail about the dying Lincoln, and the parts of the Cabinet members as well as the perpetrators were fleshed out. I remember that Dr. Mudd was portrayed as a traitor, but seemingly ...more
Apr 20, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical, fiction
An extremely engrossing read. Lincoln, inspired by the Declaration of Independence, followed one single principle that became the great crusade of his life: to preserve the nation. He was loved by half the nation but hated by the other half. In saving the Union he lost almost a generation of men. But on the day he died, believing that the war was ending, he was reported to be in a celebratory, though melancholy mood. His love of storytelling made him a fine and believable speaker. One touching m ...more
D.S. Williams
Feb 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Most people know the general history of the assassination of President Lincoln in 1865; how he was shot by John Wilkes Booth during a theatre performance shortly after the end of the American Civil War. This book by John C. Berry combines facts with well-written fiction to produce a thoroughly entertaining and well-researched book, giving the characters involved in the assassination both background and personality. His fictional accounts of conversations between the assassins, President Lincoln ...more
Aug 12, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I think the summary designed to sell this novel caused much of disappointment with it. The novel was touted to be a mix of 24 with Jack Bauer and the conspiracy to assassinate Abraham Lincoln. It definitely covered the last 24 hours of Lincoln's life, but totally lacked the intensity and high energy of a season of 24. It was more interesting than reading a history textbook, but the dialogue often seemed contrived. There were also quite a few errors that a good proofreader should have caught, e.g ...more
Jan 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I thought this was a fantastic book. Although some of facts may not have been 100% accurate, I think the author did the best with his resources and research. I learned a lot about Abraham Lincoln, the Lincoln family and Cabinet and John Wilkes Booth. I didnt think I would really like this book but I downloaded it because it was free. I really enjoyed taking my time reading it. I didnt rush through it because I knew the outcome, therefore, I was able to educate myself on the history of Abraham Li ...more
Dec 27, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As someone who typically runs from anything that even remotely reminds me of history class, I was surprised that this book caught my eye...and even more surprised that it kept my interest. Taking place over the course of 24 hours, it didn't have a chance to be boring. Though the writing style wasn't the greatest, it didn't matter...the story was good enough to hold it's own. I probably won't make a habit of reading historical fiction, but I'm glad I gave this one a chance!
Jan 24, 2016 rated it really liked it
A Night of Horrors is historical fiction of the night Abraham Lincoln was assasinated. Using facts that are known with fictional conversation throughout the book this book captures the night very well. the intensity, mood, and feelings that occure that night are very real. I really liked this book. The only issue I have with it is there were passages that the author used over and over that I thought were unnecessary. however it is a very good book.
Mary Mathews
Sep 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
This is a historical fiction based very much on factual events of the day of Abraham Lincoln's assasination, from all points of view. As much as I already knew as a history minor in college and a self-confessed history junkie, I learned a lot more such as how much blood was spilled as Seward's house and how peripheral the connection of Mary Suratt.

As much as I knew the outcome, I kept thinking, "someone stop him!"

I highly recommend for other history junkies.
Dennis Schvejda
Well written and researched historical novel detailing Lincoln's last day. Definitely a page turner, not a "dry" history book at all. I never realized how popular John Wilkes Booth was (before Lincoln's assassination) and how much planning was involved; gave me a definite "feel" for this turning point in American history.
Jun 30, 2012 rated it it was ok
False advertising . . . it's not a triller! We all know most of the details about the Lincoln assassination and the few new details aren't that exciting.

John Berry is an English professor and I expected that the writing would be better.

No sex
Several murders and other acts of violence
Mark Goodwin
May 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book. A very enjoyable read - well written. I usually plod my way through most books but this one kept my interest the whole way.I felt like I was really there.

If you like historical books, you don't want to let this one slip by.
After reading "Manhunt", a book about the chase of Lincoln's killer, this was a good supplement. Though fictional, the dialog turned dry history into a more realistic event, as if it happened in the reader's lifetime. Pretty good read.
Feb 21, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
It may be the mood I'm in, but I just can't finish it. I started it several days ago and have tried to get into it but I just can't. It seems dry to me. It may just be my mood...
Jennifer Irving
May 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
very good book. it explains in-depth the characters involved. this is stuff you don't hear about in school
Apr 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

I found this historical novel quite engaging. I learned a few new things about the assassination of President Lincoln and the attempted assassinations of William and Frederick Seward.
Jan 21, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a fast moving book on the events of the day that led to the assassination of Lincoln and the hours afterwards as Booth escapes from Washington.
Iris Smale
May 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Interesting read. obviously the author did a great deal of research. Knowing it was fiction &knowing how it was going to end - I still didn't want to stop reading
Apr 14, 2012 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Jan 05, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was very well done. I learned a lot and enjoyed the book. Yes, I know it is historical fiction but I still learned a lot.
Sherry Kent
Sep 06, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A great historical fiction. The death of Lincoln has affected generations of men and women. This is so descriptively vivid, truly painting the picture of the horror of that night and next morning.
Aug 14, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really enjoyed this book. Made me take on a whole new perspective of the assination and the many people it affected. Was a little redundant about 3/4 of the way into the book.
Coleen Dailey
Oct 08, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Didn't think there was much more to read about this topic. Found it to be factually accurate and an easy read for someone who might think they like history but aren't sure.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Stone of Destiny
  • Ransom Dreams
  • Small Kindnesses
  • A Kingdom's Cost (The Douglas Trilogy, #1)
  • Saving Jackie K
  • Cross Current (Seychelle Sullivan, #2)
  • Ferris' Bluff
  • The Shut Mouth Society
  • The Contessa's Vendetta
  • Manless in Montclair: Love, Loss, Excessive Dating
  • The Last Stoic
  • Devil's Lair
  • Dark Entry
  • The Foul Mouth and the Fanged Lady (The King Henry Tapes, #1)
  • Mozart's Wife
  • Spirited Away (Spirited Away, #1)
  • A Dash of Murder (Betsy Livingston / Pecan Bayou #1)
  • The Lost Journal

Share This Book

“Time fell short of seconds and words fell short of breath as they all realized that Abraham Lincoln, friend, father, and leader was no more.” 0 likes
More quotes…