I have read other Bugliosi titles before and liked them. His book on Manson was very good. Parkland is a well written book and the writing style is easy to follow. My issues with this book are really about the content.
The narration is good and doesn't distract from the story.
The first part was a pretty good minute by minute account of the day but the second half, detailing the investigation, was very droll and patchy. Bugliosi paints the secret service, the Dallas PD and Sheriffs Department and the FBI as flawless organizations who "did the best they could" and Jack Ruby as a sympathetic character.
I've read dozens of books on Kennedy and the assassination, including the entire text of the Warren Commission Report. I've had a curiosity that began in 4th grade over 20 years ago, so when a new book comes out it get's my attention. I'm not a conspiracy theory true believer and I was just as critical of Oliver Stone but this book a) contains nothing new and b) goes so far to present Oswald as the lone assassin that relevant facts that have made people question the Warren Commission for decades are either ignored or presented as fiction. At best Parkland is a one sided version of an event that really needs to be touted as such. At worst it is revisionist history.
While the story is familiar to most of us from media accounts, the book details Smart's ordeal from her personal side of story. Smart is honest and humble and does a good job of helping the listener understand what it was like to live through this as a 14 year old girl.
While true crime stories typically detail the investigation, there is little of that included in this book. Smart gives insight into her abductors motivations, primarily how he used a religious delusion to justify his pedophilia. Smart was astute enough even as a young girl to recognize his rants for what they were; the product of darkness not the will of God.
While it seems only right that the author should tell her own story, her narrative is distracting at times.
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