The Curse of Cain

J. Mark Powell and L.D. Meagher

Forge Books

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On April 14, 1865 John Wilkes Booth assassinated President Abraham Lincoln at Ford's Theater, or so the history books tell us ... but what if there was a second gunman who actually pulled the trigger?
The Curse of Cain
Like The Day of the Jackal, The Eagle has Landed, and The Key to Rebecca, The Curse of Cain is the cat and mouse story of a ruthless professional assassin hired to kill the Union President and the Confederate agent dispatched by Jefferson Davis to thwart his plan.
Like Forsyth's Jackal, Follett's Needle, and Higgins's Devlin, the assassin-Basil Tarleton-is a charming agent of death. Jack Tanner-a Confederate era Jack Ryan, is willing to forego matters of the heart in order to carry out his mission and save the life of the President of an opposing nation.
Set in the closing weeks of the Civil War and against the backdrop of the notorious Lincoln conspiracy (and subsequent cover-up) as well as the actual Confederate intelligence network that existed in Washington, D.C. at the time, Powell and Meagher tell a heart-stopping tale of suspense and intrigue. This dangerous mission follows assassin and pursuer, as they close in on their targets in enemy territory where exposure means certain death.
The Curse of Cain races to the page-turning climax on that fateful night at Ford's Theater.

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Book Excerpts

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The Curse of Cain
OneTHE MISSIONRichmond, Virginia February 1865 
A muffled drumbeat rolled down the street. It echoed off brick buildings in counterpoint to the patter of rain. Matching bay horses draped in soggy black crepe stomped their hooves and sent impatient clouds of steam from their noses. People lining the street bowed their heads as a squad of soldiers filed out of St. Paul's Church carrying a coffin through the steady drizzle.An old man watched from the sidewalk in front of the church's massive portico as the funeral procession pulled away.

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Praise for The Curse of Cain

"The Curse of Cain is Civil War fiction's The Day of the Jackal!"
-- William Forstchen, New York Times bestselling co-author of Gettysburg

"Espionage, conspiracy, skullduggery in high places - my kind of book! The Curse of Cain is a high-stakes, cat and mouse game with an ending that will blow you away!"
--G. Gordon Liddy
Nationally syndicated radio show host and best-selling author of Will, Out Of Control, The Monkey Handlers and When I Was A Kid This Was A Free Country

"A pivotal moment in American history comes alive with "you are there" authenticity. The Curse of Cain so seamlessly weaves fiction and fact, it's hard to tell where one ends and the other begins."
--Zell Miller
U.S. Senator and former Governor of Georgia and best-selling author of A National Party No More and Corps Values: Everything You Need To Know, I Learned In The Marines

"The Curse of Cain is the rare historical novel that reads like an airport thriller. Its rich research never gets in the way of the essential story: murder, sex, and intrigue during the dying days of the Civil War. The plot plummets at the speed of a Minie ball, with deadly and entertaining effect." --Tony Horwitz, Pulitizer Prize winner and bestselling author of Confederates in the Attic

Reviews from Goodreads


About the Author

J. Mark Powell and L.D. Meagher

J. Mark Powell is a veteran journalist currently working as a Congressional staffer.  L.D. Meagher is a journalist and broadcaster.  This is their first novel.

J. Mark Powell
L.D. Meagher


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Available Formats and Book Details

The Curse of Cain
J. Mark Powell and L.D. Meagher

e-Book Agency

e-Book Agency
Tom Doherty Associates
Forge Books
April 2006
e-Book Agency
ISBN: 9781466820579
ISBN10: 1466820578
320 pages

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Forge Books

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