Lisa's Reviews > Mrs. Kennedy and Me: An Intimate Memoir

Mrs. Kennedy and Me by Clint Hill
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's review
Oct 02, 2016

really liked it
bookshelves: biography-memoir
Read from June 01 to 02, 2012

This is a fine memoir of the author's years as an agent on Jecqueline Kennedy's Secret Service protective detail. At first, Hill is disappointed with the assignment because he thinks that he'll be going to "tea parties and ladies' luncheons," but he soon learns that Mrs. Kennedy hardly fits the First Lady stereotype established by Mamie Eisenhower and Bess Truman, and he comes to love the Kennedy family and to respect and admire Mrs. Kennedy. He also has an interesting time during her world travels, dealing with her spontaneous style, and experiencing the elegant, rich lifestyle of the Kennedys and their friends and acquaintances.

The book strikes a good balance between Hill's experiences with Mrs. Kennedy and the effects of his job on his own life, with the emphasis on Mrs. Kennedy, which is what most readers will want to know about. Nevertheless, as I grew to like the author, I would have liked to know a little more about how the job affected his personal life--all that travel with Mrs. Kennedy (she spent as much time as possible away from Washington, D.C., and so Hill spent much of his time in Hyannis Port, Palm Springs, and at her weekend getaway in Virginia horse country, as well as with her on other trips to New York City and international destinations) obviously affected his marriage and family relationships. In reading between the lines, one gathers that he and his wife eventually divorced, and that he may have experienced many long, dark years of depression and perhaps PTSD after President Kennedy's assassination, but these are only hinted at and a few more clarifying sentences would have cleared up confusion and would not have been self-indulgent. In addition to the insights into Jacqueline Kennedy's life, the book gives information about the workings of the Secret Service in that time, which does seem like Camelot in comparison to the harsh times during and after late November 1963. A good read.

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10/02/2016 marked as: read

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