This audio demonstrates just how much America and its power players have changed in 50 years as well as how much has stayed the same. Jackie gave so much grace to the country just by being herself. This audio is quite an education for me not just simply in politics but journalism as well. It shows a different side of the mysterious Jacqueline and I find this private side much more compelling. I can't help but wonder how different this country would be today if JFK would have been able to serve two terms.
Consideing she is in the grieving process, I don't know how she composed herself in so little time. Is JFK really all that she claims or is she romanticizing his legacy for posterity like a good 1960s wife? Even with all of this new info, there is still so much mystery to this woman who changed the White House forever. It is interesting how she voices her role as a woman and a wife and how her life and career actuallly turned out. It is a shame she did not make more of these tapes throughout her lifetime. Maybe she did. Wouldn't that be a nice surprise!
I couldn't help myself.
I am a lifelong lover of books. I got my degree in English & worked in the publishing business for many years. Now I work with wildlife.
Like most people who were alive on that terrible day I remember it well. I was in Austin, Texas on the day JFK was murdered. I worked for the University of Texas and he was coming to the campus that night. They had been preparing for days. My husband and I were so excited as we were to see him that night. When we heard he had been shot, I pictured him showing up with his arm in a sling or something like that. Never for one moment could I begin to imagine him dead!
This book brought back that time and place for me. What I felt hearing Jackie's voice again is hard to describe. This was a fascinating read for me and I am so glad that it was published. She comes across as so loyal and devoted to JFK, one wonders if she knew what an active sex life he was carrying on during their marriage. We knew nothing about it at the time, of course. Different time, different rules.
Hearing her actual voice, intonations, inflections, and perspective.
The most interesting to me was when she talked about herself. The least interesting were the dull questions by Schlesinger. They could have been much better. "What did you think of Stevenson? What did you think of Rusk?" Over and over again. Many were people I didn't even know.
Obviously, listening to Mrs. Kennedy's voice brought the entire thing to life. Without it I would have given an entirely different rating to the book.
The times I laughed were the few times the children came in and pirated the microphone.
As brilliant as Mr. Schlesinger is/was at the time, his questions were very uninteresting and rather benign. He could have asked questions that were more specific and of interest to the public. The book is really about Jack Kennedy and when it's told by his newly-widowed spouse, he is described as a god-like figure which we all know, of course, was not the case. But it did give insight into some of his personality and life at the White House that was interesting and informative.
Although I was disappointed in the overall content of the book, I have to say it was a good listen and worth my time.
Mrs. Kennedy spoke with clarity, wit and candor about an era past. I found this inside point of view facinating. It was impossible to hear her without seeing her having the conversations in my mind. Clinking of ice in glasses and lighting of cigaretts were time marks of this period. Utterly charming.
Talking about being called back to the whitehouse during the bay of pigs so the family could be with Jack and if it came to it, die together, as a family.
Mrs. Kennedy's voice adds allure, strength, humor and surprize to the events she relates.
A view of a whitehouse marriage in pivotal times for the United States.
So interesting reading what Jack Kennedy really thought about the people surrounding him. It clarified so much of what actions were taken during the administration and the difficulties of any president. Very rare behind the scenes look at one administration.
I really enjoyed hearing this history as remembered by the First Lady, she had insights that no other person was privy to. Her voice was strong and her opinions of various politicians and vital americans from that time period was surprising and unedited.
The quality of the tapes reflected the technology of the era, they were at times very difficult to understand, and the proximity to an airport made parts of the tapes unintelligiblle.
I am grateful to have had the opportunity to hear in her own voice, and the voice of John Jr and Caroline a part of the Kennedy history.
Getting to hear the trials and tribulations of the life of the first President that I remembered'
serving in the White House.
If todays technology would have been available in 1964.
I LOVE books. And dogs & quilting & beading & volunteering.
I was voting in my first election and had spent 6 months working at the Democratic Headquarters in Hollywood the year of Kennedy's election.
It was definitely Camelot for many of us...a young couple leading the nation after growing up with older men, a man who wanted we young adults to take our lives in our hands and do better for the world.
It's hard to believe that 11 months from now will be the 50th Anniversary of Dallas and the day that that "Brief and Timeless Place called Camelot"Died.
Hearing the First Lady's voice made me cry at times as she spoke about how her place was to help her husband and raise the children and not to be involved in politics and how she changed over the next decade...and how sad she was that Jack never saw her grow as a woman from helpmate to self directing woman.
Still, the casual conversations she recorded here are a wonderful look into the family life and political life of the man who is still in presidential candidates minds...and there was just ONE Jack Kennedy! NO!he wasn't Dan Quayle either.
I recommend this book if you were part of this era, as I am, if you're interested in political machinations, and if you are looking for history of those times from the viewpoint of wealthy east coasters.
The background sounds are charming-you hear a childs voice singing, cigarettes being lit and ice cubes rattled----it must have been recorded in a room with a wood floor as shoe heels click clack quite a bit. It's all so casual and you can tell it was so very difficult for Jacqueline to do-just about 5 months after Dallas.
I encourage this especially for young women-you can get a good overviews of what it was like when your grandmother was a youngster, Jackie tells of the Cuban Missile Crisis, and of encouraging congress to not tear down the Dolly Madison House to put up an office building. She began bringing class into the white house, getting former presidents families to donate furniture so the styles could be true to the era. She designed the Oval Office as it is today--changed it from an austere cold room to a warm parlor where the President can meet with anyone. She picked the blues and golds that dominate the room and designed the rug in the oval office. She designed the decore for the first Air Force 1 "
Over those 1000+ days she says they were the happiest in her life, even though she lost a child. Then it was over.
This is a book that is meant to be listened to-the nuances are priceless and so is Jackie. I remember watching her show off the redecorating of the white house-a 90 minute CBS special that took hundreds of thousands of people of many countries thru the National House. I remember when she spoke then that her voice was very whispy and breathy but she isn't so much in this collection of 6 interviews.
Sorry-this isn't a good review--I just can't forget this book and I know it will be on my mind for days.
Please excuse....but I did love it all.
Loved it - was wonderful the hear her voice and I wished it would never end. Very enjoyable and learned alot!
Authenticity and real interview.
There is nothing that can be changed. My dislikes were not due to the story as such.
What I learned about Johns brothers was actually more interesting to me.
Some might finde it very interesting if there were other interviews like this available.
As a foreign listener (Danish), it was a bit hard to follow the conversation in the beginning because persons do not speak very clearly in a context like this one. However, that changed after some time as my "ears adapted to the style and vocabulary".
The interviews were interesting but I am sure they would have been more so for a native American. JFK belonged to my parents generation, and I knew him from history classes, of course, and found his precidency interesting, but I have no doubt that a native American (especially adults of his generation) would like this very much. He was "one of theirs".