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The Secret Memoirs of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis: A Novel

3.82  ·  Rating Details  ·  130 Ratings  ·  25 Reviews
Who was Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis? She was a wife, mother, artist, editor, and world traveler. A bright young woman who rose to unparalleled celebrity. One of the world's most inspiring and influential women of her day, she has become arguably the most important female icon of all time. Yet she also was a woman of passion and deep emotions, who wanted to experience all th
Hardcover, 368 pages
Published February 7th 2006 by St. Martin's Press
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Biographical Fiction
85th out of 419 books — 210 voters
Jackie By Josie by Caroline PrestonLibra by Don DeLilloThe Pink Suit by Nicole Mary KelbyThe Secret Memoirs of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis by Ruth FranciscoJack's Widow by Eve Pollard
Fictitious Kennedy
4th out of 11 books — 3 voters

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Community Reviews

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This fictional memoir of Jackie Kennedy Onassis is well-written engaging, and will definitely continue to hold your interest, although to me it had some cons as well.
I enjoy reading about Jackie Kennedy, and there were many parts of this book that rang fairly true to what I imagine her thinking and feeling. However, it was much too sensual and descriptive in many parts for my taste, and it seemed like any negative theory you have heard relative to things the Kennedy family may or may not have
Oct 16, 2010 Laurel-Rain rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
From the very first pages of this "fictionalized memoir," I was captivated. First of all, I have been a big Kennedy fan for years and watched the beautiful couple inaugurated in early 1961, and then, like a series of photos in an album, I saw portraits of the first family, with the adorable children; Jackie's restoration of the White House, depicted on TV; and, of course, the tragic events in Dallas, with the memorable images of the bloodied pink suit.

Even later, when scandalous allegations came
Sep 26, 2014 Joanna rated it liked it
I borrowed this book from a friend, as she took it with her as her reading material on a vacation in Italy. I took it with me to Paris (and to take a physical book rather than just read it on my kindle means I am interested!). It's always enjoyable to read about Jackie O. The author did a great job at combining facts into a story. Although I must admit it was difficult for me sometimes to respect that the thoughts were "put into" the mind of what Jackie was thinking. How could anyone ever know, ...more
May 16, 2009 Coco rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, women
Full disclosure--I love, no wait, I worship Jacqueline Kennedy. So I truly cannot be objective about this book. I adore everything Jackie, from books, photos and quotes to obscure memorabilia. If you don't like Jackie, you probably won't enjoy this novel. I do, so I did. Does the book romanticize Jacke? Yes, most likely, but I turned a blind eye to that, so read the review at your own peril.

The conceit of the book is that Jackie had written her memoirs and then given them to a fellow editor with
Jan 21, 2011 Rebecca rated it it was amazing
This book was excellent. I couldn't put it down. It is written as a work of fiction but all the events of Jackie's life are portrayed through her voice. I didn't know her history and found it fascinating.

She talked about the children but didn't focus on everything in their lives. I liked this because I have read Sweet Caroline and the Day John Died so I knew the kid's history.

It made me sad that both of her marriages were for money and both of her husbands had numerous mistresses. And her mothe
Sep 07, 2011 Pooch rated it really liked it
This powerfully written fictional biography is a disturbing account of the horrors of Jacqueline Kennedy's life of physical and emotional abuse beginning in childhood and continuing through her marriage to Aristotle Onassis. She ties her survival to powerful, wealthy men due to insecurity and desire for a very high standard of living. The author has successfully created a human portrait while stripping the iconic Jackie to reveal a sensual and frequently panicked woman. The unnecessary explicit ...more
Dec 16, 2012 Judi rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2006
"In the author's note at the end of The Secret Memoirs of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis: A Novel, Ruth Francisco states up front that this is definitely a work of fiction. Although most events which take place within these pages have a basis in historical fact, they have been "filtered through Ms. Francisco's imagination." She tells her readers she "approached Jackie's fictional persona as an actor approaches a new writing in her character's voice and imagining her thoughts and feelings." ...more
Aug 08, 2015 Mitzi rated it really liked it
This ia a fictionalized memoir of Jackie Kennedy. As someone who has always been fascinated with Jack and Jackie, I savored it. Not a page turner, but well researched, and I imagine some of it is spot on. Thumbs up!
Jan 28, 2016 Kbpage rated it it was ok
Interesting but wished I hadn't read. After it made me feel bad like I had read someone's personal diary - even knowing it was fiction.
Steph Elias
Mar 25, 2011 Steph Elias rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book. My parents were big Kennedy fans so I knew a bit of the actual history. I found this book interesting and well written. The Secret Memoirs of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis: A Novel, is the kind of book that I reach for when I have the time to enjoy a good read, and one of those that is hard to put down. The author did a fantastic job, I would recommend it to anyone that enjoys a good story, especially fans of the Kennedy legacy. I look forward to reading more of Ms. Fran ...more
Annie Hartman
Aug 03, 2011 Annie Hartman rated it it was amazing
This really opened my eyes to life from Jackie's perspective. Super well written and I think it really captured what may have gone through her head. Not only did it tell about her time as first lady but her childhood, and her marriage to Ari Onassis and her relationships after. She and Jack each had such tortured, tragic souls. I hope they found happiness and peace after they left this earth.
Bonnie G
Oct 17, 2010 Bonnie G rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was fascinated with the fictional inner dialog of Jackie and surprised at all the outward facts of her life that I didn't know. I ended up feeling pretty sorry for her and wanting to read more. Next I will read a biography by Spoto. Jackie has to be one of the most interesting women of the 20th century.
I won this book in a Goodreads First Reads giveaway. I did enjoy this book and much of it was fun, but there was much heartache as you can imagine and many more examples of Jack's bedroom antics than I ever wanted to know. The author did a great job of writing this story from Jackie's journals.
Judy Schultz
Jan 21, 2011 Judy Schultz rated it really liked it
I won this book in the Giveaway and it is very well written. The author seems to know the details of her subject extremely well and also that period of history. I found it very interesting as I was in college during the Kennedy era. I would give it four stars.
May 29, 2008 Arlene rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
So, I have a not so secret fascination with Jackie O...but it’s not a voyeuristic obsession. I thought this was an interesting read and possible take on her life. But since it’s a memoir I kept wondering what was real and what was fabricated in this book.
Mar 04, 2012 Lori rated it did not like it
This was a disappointing book, I thought it was going to be a memoir,but it turned out to be a type of historical fiction to me. I suppose it was my own fault for assuming it was something it didnt turn out to be. Written well.
Jun 30, 2012 Anna rated it really liked it
I liked this book a lot but felt the author included some unnecessary fictitious assumptions. I would like to know whether certain ideas were founded from other sources or purely the author's imagination.
Dec 09, 2009 Liz rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really like this book a lot. For me it was one of those books I didn't want o put down because I wanted to see what was coming next.
Aug 06, 2009 Angel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've always been obsessed with the Kennedy's especially Jackie and this work of fiction was deliciously juicy!!
Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner)
Let's talk about how I'm related to her so I demand to have this book! :) For real though, I am related to her!
Feb 20, 2007 Ellen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This novel isn't very flattering to any of the Kennedy clan (or Jacqueline), but it's hard to put down anyway.
Janie Larned
Oct 11, 2013 Janie Larned rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book and imagining Jackie's life; however, it was too descriptive.
Nov 23, 2009 Anne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Beautifully written fiction! Fun to read!
Apr 13, 2011 Julie rated it liked it
Well written
Elle Sy
Aug 05, 2013 Elle Sy rated it really liked it
glad i found it!
Breana Steele
Breana Steele rated it liked it
Apr 28, 2016
Rebecca Moody
Rebecca Moody marked it as to-read
Apr 23, 2016
Carole Krohn
Carole Krohn rated it really liked it
Apr 22, 2016
Aimee Shaffer
Aimee Shaffer marked it as to-read
Mar 29, 2016
Dawn Jasper
Dawn Jasper marked it as to-read
Mar 27, 2016
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I tend to write novels that are a little controversial. I don't intend to, but a question grabs hold of my mind--Do we have a right to say no to medical technology? What would it be like to be Jackie Kennedy? Where is Islamic extremism taking us?--and it won't let go. I have to explore it, I have to write about it.

Since my interests are varied, my books are varied, perhaps too much so. But whateve
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