Bob's Reviews > Jack Kennedy: Elusive Hero

Jack Kennedy by Chris Matthews
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's review
Dec 04, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: biography

I've read perhaps a dozen books on John F Kennedy over the years. Some books focused on various parts of his life, from early years and schooling through his time in WWII, and several on his later life in the House, the Senate and the Presidency. I have always been particularly intrigued by his relationship with Kruchev and the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962.

Chris Matthews, with an obvious love for the history of the period, does an outstanding job highlighting the relevant parts of JFK's life that made him the man he was. By focusing on key areas of his life and their impact on his development, Mr Matthews shows why JFK became the leader he was.

JFK's life was certainly not without controversy and Mr Matthews does bring up his now well known womanizing. But he also talks about the impact his father, Joseph Kennedy, and a strict Irish-American upbringing allowed him to become a ruthless politician. His ongoing health problems gave him the ability to compartmentalize his life. His war record gave him the perfect explanation for many of his physical challenges. I was quite surprised by some of the tactics he used to achieve his goals.

This was a tremendously enjoyable book. Mr Matthews did a great job weaving stories and commentary into very readable prose. This is not your typical history book.

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Reading Progress

December 4, 2011 – Shelved
December 20, 2011 – Started Reading
December 21, 2011 –
page 41
December 22, 2011 –
page 65
December 25, 2011 –
page 151
December 26, 2011 –
page 479
December 27, 2011 – Finished Reading
February 24, 2012 – Shelved as: biography

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