“Dallek’s portraits of advisers including Arthur Schlesinger Jr. and Walt Rostow are lapidary, and it is difficult to quarrel with his judgments.” (The New York Times Book Review
“Dallek is an assiduous digger into archives. . . . The story of how a glamorous but green young president struggled with conflicting and often bad advice while trying to avoid nuclear Armageddon remains a gripping and cautionary tale of the loneliness of command.” (Evan Thomas, The Washington Post
“Think The Best and the Brightest
meets Team of Rivals
. . . . Dallek is one of the deans of presidential scholarship.” (Beverly Gage, The Nation
From the Back Cover
A Globe & Mail 100 Selection
In Camelot's Court, acclaimed JFK biographer Robert Dallek takes an insider's look at the brain trust whose contributions to the successes and failures of Kennedy's administration were indelible.
Kennedy purposefully assembled a dynamic team of advisers noted for their brilliance and ambition, but the administration was an uneasy band of rivals engaged in fiery debates behind closed doors. Dallek details the contentious issues of Kennedy's years in office, including the Bay of Pigs, the Cuban Missile Crisis, civil rights, and Vietnam. He illuminates a president who believed in surrounding himself with the best and the brightest but often found himself disappointed with their recommendations. The result is a striking depiction of a leader whose wise resistance to pressure and adherence to personal principles offers a cautionary tale for our own time.
Meticulously researched and masterfully written, Camelot's Court is an intimate tour of a tumultuous White House and a new portrait of the men whose powerful influence shaped the Kennedy legacy.