Alla's Reviews > After Camelot: A Personal History of the Kennedy Family--1968 to the Present

After Camelot by J. Randy Taraborrelli
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Apr 30, 2012

it was amazing

“After Camelot” by J. Randy Taraborrelli is an all-inclusive chronology of the future of the Kennedy dynasty following the assassinations of JFK and RFK. The lengthy an detailed tome is divided into the following parts: Jackie, Eunice, Sarge, Ted, Ethel, Jackie/Ari/The Lawfords, Sargent Tries Again, The Third Generation In Trouble, Poor Ari, Rosemary and Rose, Shriver for President, Ted’s 1980 campaign, David’s Story, Kennedy Upheaval, Caroline/John/Maurice, William Kennedy Smith and the Palm Beach Scandal, Kennedy Wives Old and New, Jackie: Her Final Years, John and Carolyn, Michael’s Story, A Peaceful Time, Camelot Loses its Prince, Transitions, and Looking Ahead. The book covers a variety of issues: Jackie’s re-marriage to Aristotle Onassis, Ted’s presidential ambitions thwarted by the accident at Chappaquiddick when he ran his car over a bridge and the passenger with him drowned, Rosemary’s—JFK’s sister’s—life-long problems following an ill-advised lobotomy done at Joseph’s behest, Eunice Kennedy’s support of Special Olympics and charity endeavors aimed at people with special needs, her husband Sarge’s unsuccessful run for vice-president (for most of his life, his political ambitions were blocked by Ted at every turn) and his support of the Peace Corps, William Kennedy Smith’s alleged rape scandal, Michael Kennedy’s skiing accident, David Kennedy’s drug abuse, as well as JFK Jr.’s life, his relationship with Carolyn, and ultimately their tragic demise. The book ends as Caroline Kennedy dips her toes in politics, and quickly decides that her family name isn’t enough foundation on which to build a career now. So is this the end of the Kennedy dynasty? J.Randy Taraborrelli carefully tackles all the developments in the last couple of decades, and attempts to answer this question. Taraborrelli did an amazing job with research, and making the characters and events discussed come alive. This is perhaps the most detailed account out there of the Kennedy saga post JFK. Well-known facts manage to line up nicely along information that was more rarely known—JFK Jr.’s brief relationships with Daryl Hannah and Madonna, David Kennedy’s spiral into drug abuse, Ted’s questionable picking-up of women at bars with his son and nephew, and other interesting tidbits. Overall, it was an entertaining read.

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