Friday, October 22, 2021

Fiction/Nonfiction Quick Reviews: The Kennedy Edition

Five Days in November by Clint Hill with Lisa McCubbin (2014)

The story of the days surrounding the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, as told by the Special Agent in Charge of Mrs. Kennedy's Secret Service detail, Clint Hill.  Although this book isn't very long, it is a very detailed account of the President's trip to Texas that ended in tragedy.  Agent Hill, even 50 years later, remembers incredible details from the trip, from JFK's last interaction with his son to Jackie's poise under immense pressure.  Hill's account is succinct yet emotional and is accompanied by many photographs from the time, which greatly added to the story.  I could feel Hill's admiration for the First Lady in every word of his account, and the shock of the entire nation really comes through.  A truly unique perspective on a defining moment in America's history.  5 stars

And They Called It Camelot by Stephanie Marie Thornton (2020)
 
A story of the life of Jackie Kennedy, from the early 1950s through the late 1970s, focusing on the many public faces she showed and how she tried to forge her own identity.  I've always been fascinated by Jackie and JFK, and I thought this was a fantastic addition to the historical fiction genre.  Thornton's writing is so lovely and elegant, it really brought Jackie's voice to life.  Although there are a lot of events that I knew about, there were quite a few I didn't. I liked how Thornton included information about Jackie's preservation efforts.  Her many roles as a politician's wife, a mother, and a public figure in general were all given a place to shine, and I really feel like we were able to get inside her thoughts and experience how she really might have felt about certain things, in particular JFK's infidelities.  Thornton portrays Jackie as a complex and intelligent woman, and I thoroughly enjoyed this book.  4 stars


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22 comments:

  1. Someday I want to pick up more books about the Kennedys. I remember reading The Residence and finding them really interesting. Great reviews! I'm glad you enjoyed these books.

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    1. Thanks, Aj! I loved The Residence, and the Kennedys are an endlessly fascinating family.

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  2. You know this is right up my alley! I really liked Camelot, but haven't read Five Days yet. Will have to add it to my TBR list!

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    1. I think you will be really impressed by it!

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  3. There's no such thing as too many books about the Kennedys! I've read quite a few, but not these two. Both sound really good.

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    1. Agreed, JoAnn! These were both outstanding reads.

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  4. And They Called It Camelot has been on my wishlist since it released and now I want it even more!

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    1. I think you're really going to like it, Stephanie!

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  5. I really love Stephanie Marie Thornton’s books, especially this one! Fab many reviews, Angela!

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  6. Ooh! I do love anything to do with The Kennedys! And They Called it Camelot sounds fantastic! I am so happy that you loved both of these, Angela!

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  7. My mother and sister are obsessed with the Kennedy's. We have a lot of Kennedy books in our home. The first book sounds very touching. It seems like the personal connection really transferred to the book.

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    1. It really did, you could tell how much he admired President Kennedy and loved Mrs. Kennedy, while still remaining professional and respectful.

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  8. I remember growing up there was a real mystique around Jackie Kennedy so I would think that book would be super interesting.

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  9. Jackie still remains such a fascinating woman,

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  10. These both sound really interesting, I wouldn't mind learning a bit more about the Kennedys myself! I'll have to check these out some time, I think!

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    1. I hope you enjoy them when you do, Jordan!

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  11. I've always been fascinated by the Kennedys so both of these books really appeal to me. Glad they were such great reads for you. :)

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I'm so glad you stopped by, and I would love to hear your thoughts! Comments are always greatly appreciated!