Meet the new action heroes: Lincoln, Da Vinci, Dickens and Queen Victoria

Forget Indiana Jones. If you're making a period-piece adventure these days, you might want to consider putting the whip, wooden stake or pistol in the hand of a long-gone world leader or esteemed author.

It may sound a bit strange, but that's the message coming back from pop culture at the moment. Consider the fact that, at bookstores right now, Abe Lincoln and Queen Victoria are each taking on dark supernatural threats and that Hollywood has plans to turn Charles Dickens, H.P. Lovecraft and Leonardo da Vinci into on-screen action heroes.

The new novel "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter" by Seth Grahame-Smith (who also brought the world "Pride and Prejudice and Zombies") is getting enthusiastic reviews, as is "Queen Victoria: Demon Hunter," which Los Angeles Times book reviewer Nick Owchar called "wildly entertaining."...

There may be one upside to this scramble to find a future blockbuster in the pages of the past -- think of all the Hollywood agents who now have to go get themselves a library card.

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