The Hour Of Peril | Daniel Stashower | Audiobook Review

Why Did I Listen To This Book?

I listened to The Hour Of Peril: The Secret Plot To Murder Lincoln Before The Civil War by Daniel Stashower narrated by Edoardo Ballerini because of this secret project where I am judging audiobooks for a thing. Once I get through all of them, I will let you guys actually know what the project is. Anyways, I chose this one to listen to because the subject matter is interesting. I know not everyone finds presidential history all that fascinating, but I do. Like, I even have a list of my favorite presidents (Teddy Roosevelt, I am looking at YOU) and it turns out that Lincoln is among them. SO! When I was given the chance to listen to a book about pre-Civil War era Lincoln, I took it.

The Hour Of Peril by Daniel Stashower | Good Books And Good Wine

What Is The Hour Of Peril About?

Basically The Hour Of Peril by Daniel Stashower is about Abraham Lincoln’s train journey in 1861 to inauguration and the Baltimore plot, where you know, some nutjobs were planning to assassinate Lincoln before he even became president. The book provides thorough details on the life of the man who uncovered the plot, Daniel Pinkerton, and you know, how he unravelled it with the help of the first American female detective, Kate Warne, who was a young widow full of moxie. Essentially, this is exactly the sort of history someone like me pays attention to — conspiracies, presidents, trains, and strong females. HECK YES.

What Did I Learn?

  • Inaugurations present a dangerous time.
  • Presidents did not have the Secret Service back then, so like, the risk of assassination was much greater.
  • There were female detectives — and they could get into social circles and uncover information that men could not.
  • Daniel Pinkerton came to the US from Scotland, worked as I think a barrelmaker, then ended up being a detective after being tasked to investigate a counterfeit money case by his neighbors. Funny how fate works.
  • That Lincoln was surrounded by good looking military personal.
  • Lincoln wrote his own speeches.

Who Should Listen To This Book?

I think that people who are interested in history with a narrative bent should read this book, actually they should really listen to The Hour Of Peril (which I somehow keep calling the hour of power in my head). If you go to things like Civil War Reenactments and loved social studies class, you will love this book. Also, if you like learning about murder plots getting foiled and such. Also, people who like learning about women’s history would probably enjoy learning about Kate Warne. She’s so cool you guys.

How’s The Narration?

I spend a lot of time on google chat complaining about the narration of these books that I am required to read for this secret project. I did not complain about the narration of The Hour Of Peril.  In fact, I listened to it in two days, whereas other books of similar length that I have had to listen to have taken me WAY longer to get through. Edoardo Ballerini brings Stashower’s book to life and has one of those educated old-time sounding accents, making it sound authentic but not annoying. Thus far this book is my favorite of the ones I’ve had to listen to for the project. The Hour Of Peril by Daniel Stashower is 13 hours and 45 minutes long. It is produced by Macmillan Audio. It is not a chore to listen to.

Sum It Up With A GIF:

Urkel detective GIF

Detectives, you know.

Disclosure: Review Copy Provided

Other reviews of The Hour Of Peril by Daniel Stashower:

The Maiden’s Court – “not boring in the slightest
Book Hog – “a well-written, suspenseful and educational story

About April (Books&Wine)

April is in her 30s and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and toddler, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.


  1. This does not sound like a Christina book, but I’m glad you enjoyed this secret project book. Also, laughing my ass off because I’ve used that gif for something too, though I can’t remember what and it’s bugging me.

    Also hilarious is your description of the accent. Totes know what you mean.
    Christina (A Reader of Fictions) recently posted..Gallivanting in New YorkMy Profile

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