Forty Ways to Look at JFK: A New Account Of His Life And His Myth
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Forty Ways to Look at JFK: A New Account Of His Life And His Myth

3.48 of 5 stars 3.48  ·  rating details  ·  62 ratings  ·  8 reviews
“The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie–deliberate, contrived, and dishonest–but the myth–persistent, persuasive, and unrealistic.”
–John F. Kennedy

Statesman and hero, opportunist and fraud. John F. Kennedy’s contradictions have inspired such fascination that the public’s interest in him has never dimmed. Now, with the same striking technique she used in the...more
Paperback, 549 pages
Published September 29th 2009 by Ballantine Books (P) (first published January 1st 2005)
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Gretchen's Rubin's tour de force on the life and presidency of John F. Kennedy, for which her excellent 40 Ways to Look at Winston Churchill now seems a warm up, presents a many-faceted view of both Kennedy's meteoric political career and his hidden personal life. As Rubin points out, borrowing Isaiah Berlin's famous comparison, if Churchill was a hedgehog guided by one great idea, Kennedy was a fox, whose perspective constantly shifts. While Kennedy may not have lived up to the stature of his h...more
My interest in reading this book was to try and get a true picture of a man who has become a legend. The veneration JFK receives seemed to be incongruous with the few things I knew about him/his presidency: the Bay of Pigs which in most accounts was a disaster, the space race which I admire but is it really cause for legend hood, and civil rights which my recollection put more squarely on Johnson's shoulders, and of course his mysterious assasination. So what did Kennedy do that made him such a...more
By far one of my favorite Kennedy books, and I have read many. A new look and take on the Kennedy legacy-the author looks to explain what made Kennedy-Kennedy, one of fortunes favored few with an enduring interest and love from the American people.
Jim Lang
A friend loaned this to me, as I love history, and I must say that I really enjoyed it. Gretchen Rubin uses a clever approach to examine the strengths and flaws of JFK, and while it becomes repetitive in spots, it is an enjoyable examination of one of our most compelling presidents. I appreciate the unique approach to examining Kennedy.
Emi Rigby
A very unique approach to a biography, this book goes through the life of JFK subject-by-subject. All sides of Kennedy's life are examined separately, giving you a good idea of the man and his presidency.
Gets repetitive as it goes on, but fascinating discussions at times, especially when trying to investigate his actively cultivated media presence.
Not as good as "Forty Ways to Look at Winston Churchill", but worth the read.
B. Hallward
A quick read: harmless but rather superficial.
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Gretchen Rubin is the author of the blockbuster New York Times bestsellers, Happier at Home and The Happiness Project--accounts of her experiences test-driving the wisdom of the ages, current scientific studies, and lessons from popular culture about how to be happier. On her popular blog, The Happiness Project,, she reports on her daily adventures in the pursuit of happi...more
More about Gretchen Rubin...
The Happiness Project: Or Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun Happier at Home: How I Learned to Pay Attention, Cram My Day with What I Love, Hold More Tightly, Embrace Here, and Remember Now Forty Ways to Look at Winston Churchill: A Brief Account of a Long Life The Happiness Project One-Sentence Journal: A Five-Year Record Power Money Fame Sex: A User's Guide

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