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After Camelot: A Personal History of the Kennedy Family - 1968 to the Present Hardcover – April 24, 2012

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 624 pages
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing; 1 edition (April 24, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446553905
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446553902
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 2.1 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (78 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #654,335 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"Meticulous multilayered details breathe life into remarkable recreations of family gatherings throughout this superb "fly on the wall" survey of the Camelot clan."—Publishers Weekly (starred review)

About the Author

J. Randy Taraborrelli is a respected journalist, a recognizable entertainment personality, and in-demand guest on many television programs including Today, Good Morning America, The Early Show, Entertainment Tonight, and CNN Headline News. He is the bestselling author of thirteen books.

Customer Reviews

Very thorough and well researched.
The tragic, true story of the death of David Kennedy, Bobby and Ethel's son, from a drug overdose is recalled in emotional detail.
J.W. Catledge
I laughed and cried throughout the entire book as I read it.
Barb Mueller (Canada)

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

21 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Alla S. VINE VOICE on April 30, 2012
Format: Hardcover
"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.
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45 of 51 people found the following review helpful By James M. Coffey on May 1, 2012
Format: Hardcover
This is an approachable, readable, and copiously researched look at our most famous political family: the Kennedy's. Their accomplishments have all to often been overlooked by their tragedies and scandals. The author (who has met many members of the family over several decades - including Jackie) does a commendable job at balancing both sides - we see this family struggle through tragedy as well as enjoying its many successes. While most Kennedy books look at either Ted, Jack, Bobby, or Jackie - this one looks at all the major players in the clan: Rose, Ethel, Joan, Eunice, Peter Lawford, Sargent Shriver, etc.

I am from Massachusetts and always followed politics closely - I thought I knew all there was to know about the Kennedy's - this book proved me wrong. The actions surrounding Rosemary, the eldest daughter, and what I had understood about her condition were wrong - the truth is much more interesting! The forgiveness that Joan (who is consoled by President Bush at Ted's funeral with words that should have been said to her year's ago) would find for Ted is inspirational. The dedication Eunice made to her charities is heartwarming. And, we see a true human side to Jackie (who was closer to the Kennedy's after Jack's assasination than I realized).

The commitment this family has made to performing charitable work is most admirable - even when the children were teenagers they were expected to go out and help those less fortunate. It is a shame that the actions of a few of grandchildren have painted all the 3rd generation cousins with the same negative brush - for the most part they really are decent, committed, and hard-working people.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Barb Mueller (Canada) on May 6, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Having previously read Jackie, Ethel, Joan:The Women of Camelot, I didn't hesitate to read After Camelot. Although I don't think reading Jackie, Ethel, Joan first is a must, this reader found it extremely beneficial. Having very limited knowledge of the Kennedy family, I learned a great deal about them setting a good understanding of the dynamics of the family going into the second book.

I had a hard time to put After Camelot down. As with all J. Randy Taraborrelli's books, I find myself drawn into the book as I read it. I feel the sorrow they feel during the tragic times and the joy they feel during the happy times. Having very limited knowledge of the Kennedy family and empire, I came away from this book with a complete account of their political as well as their personal lives. I found it extremely heartwarming to get to know the sisters and the in-laws of the Kennedy clan as well as the succeeding generations.

I laughed and cried throughout the entire book as I read it. It is, overall, a heartwarming, real, account of a highly public and political family, but at the end of the book I found myself realizing that they are also just human.

For anyone even slightly interested in the Kennedy family, like I was, I strongly recommend this book.
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25 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Kathy Edens on June 22, 2012
Format: Hardcover
I found this book to be interesting but it became obvious very quickly that the author is a huge fan of the Kennedy family. When he writes about their transgressions- such as the alcoholism of MANY family members, the multiple affairs and cheating episodes, Chappaquidick, the crimes committed by Ethel's sons- to me it seemed that he really wanted to sweep them under the rug. It was all presented as though every family has the same problems. Maybe they do but because the Kennedy family is so large, most families don't have the number of crimes/sins.

What I found very interesting was that no one seemed to question their supposed religiousness even though there were sins being committed on what appears to be a daily basis. The Kennedy sense of entitlement was such that they should never be questioned or held accountable for their actions, even when their actions hurt
people outside their own family (Mary Jo Kopechne, Pamela Kelley for example).

I have read another book titled The Other Mrs. Kennedy which in my opinion gave a much more unbiased portrayal of Ethel Kennedy. She was quite jealous of Jackie. She wanted to be First Lady in the worst way. She basically just popped out babies in competition with Rose, and then had very little part in rearing them. Her sense of entitlement and recklessness certainly was passed down to her children.

The treatment that even family members received when standing in the way of Kennedy ambition is at least discussed, with regard to the times Sargent Shriver wanted to run for president and when he did run for vice-president. It was obvious that the Kennedy's thought that no-one except a Kennedy should ever be president.

This book could have used better editing.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews

More About the Author

J. RANDY TARABORRELLI is the author of 18 biographies, 14 of which went on to become New York Times' best sellers, including: "Call Her Miss Ross," "Sinatra - Behind the Legend," "Madonna - An Intimate Biography," "Jackie, Ethel, Joan - Women of Camelot," "Elizabeth,"(a biography of Elizabeth Taylor); "The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe" and "After Camelot - A Personal History of the Kennedy Family 1968 to the Present."

Taraborrelli's best seller, "After Camelot," is presently in production as a miniseries for the ReelzChannel (2016), starring Katie Holmes as Jackie Kennedy Onassis. His previous book about the Kennedys - "Jackie, Ethel, Joan - Women of Camelot" was a highly-rated miniseries for NBC, starring Jill Hennesey as Jackie and Lauren Holly and Ethel. It is available for purchase here on Amazon.

His national best seller, "The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe" is the basis of a miniseries of the same name for Lifetime, starring Susan Sarandon, Kelli Garner, Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Emily Watson. It airs on May 30 and 31, 2015.

J. Randy's next two books are: an update of his classic Sinatra biography, "Sinatra - Behind the Legend," which will be published in August 2015; and "Becoming Beyonce - The Untold Story" which is the first-ever in-depth biography of the pop star, publishing in October of 2015.

J. Randy Taraborrelli has also worked as a CBS News analyst and is a popular guest on talk and entertainment programs.

The author holds a black belt in the martial art of American Tang Soo Do and a blue belt in Gracie Jiu Jitsu. He lives in Los Angeles, California.

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