January 9, 2009

The Dark Side of Camelot by Seymour M. Hersh

BOOK #: 3
CHALLENGES: A to Z, In Their Shoes, New Authors, Triple 999
RATING: 3 Stars

This is a biography of the Kennedy family, written by Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist Seymour M. Hersh. This biography is filled to overflowing with information on the Kennedy family's lives, both public and private. In fact, you feel like you are reading their diaries. Hersh has dug up more facts in his investigation for this book than anyone prior to him.

One story I was particularly intrigued by was the one of Joe Kennedy, JFK's father. I never knew much about him and a couple of the stories made me cringe. I was also interested to hear about how they hid JFK's Addison's disease so well, and about all of the stories behind the Cuban Missile Crisis, which my own father went to take part in while he was in the Navy.

Reading about the Kennedy family reminded me so much about reading stories of the Bush family- that hunger for power that can take control of a person and not let go. Of course, that is about the only comparison that can be made between the two presidents.

One aspect that I did not like about the book was actually the amount of excruciatingly detailed accounts of, well...everything. No stone was left unturned, no word left unspoken, no look left undescribed. I think that there were many parts in the book that could have been more succinct, but more serious history buffs may disagree with that opinion.

With all of that said, this book is certainly a valuable contribution to the legacy of the Kennedy family and to the era that defined them most.

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