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Brothers: The Hidden History of the Kennedy Years Paperback – Bargain Price, June 3, 2008
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
I've read tons of material on JFK's murder and this book initially felt like just another rehash of all of the other evidence that other people have flogged to death. It is much more than that, however.
Most importantly, it provides the historical context for JFK's murder. Though it is not as thorough with the lead up to RFK's murder, he does provide a fair bit of context for RFK's murder in 1968. He does not, however, capture the mood, the near-panic of that spring/summer, as first MLK and then RFK was gunned down. Because I lived through those tumultous times, as a kid growing up in Detroit, I can safely say that it felt like the world was starting to spin off its axis. He does not quite capture that feeling or sense.
But he does a great job of providing that kind of feel for the time period leading up to Dallas in '63. I'd forgotten many of the details about the events from that time. Talbot pulls it all together with lots of detail and fact and illustrates how JFK's murder was almost an inevitable event. Considering everything that led up to it.
It always amuses me when one reads critical comments such as those offered by negative reviewers here, comments that in no way address the real factual issues and concerns that have remained unresolved for over 40 years. Critics simply lapse into ad hominem attacks and never, ever address the huge factual and logical holes in the Warren Commission approach to this crime.
As someone who tried criminal cases for a living, I believe that any case against Oswald as a lone nut killer is so full of holes, it probably could not have been charged, if he had lived.Read more ›
The title of the book is a little misleading. Brothers is really focused on RFK and a few of his most loyal lieutenants. The lieutenants were so close to the Kennedys that they felt like and were treated like brothers.
As time passes, historical events become clearer. But if you wait too long to render judgment, you lose the testimony of those who participated in the events. Brothers is unusual in that sense: It adds the views from 150 new interviews, but unavoidably loses some perspective as many witnesses are no longer available and many important documents remain classified.
Here are some of the new perspectives Brothers brought to my attention:
1. JFK wasn't really in control of the CIA and military while he was president. The CIA was off running anti-Castro operations in violation of direct presidential orders. The Bay of Pigs invasion was planned by the CIA from the beginning as a ploy to trigger an American military invasion of Cuba which the Joint Chiefs supported.
2. Some in the Pentagon were pushing for a preemptive nuclear strike on the Soviet Union in 1961.
3. JFK and RFK had so little confidence in the Secret Service that they were planning to put presidential protection under the attorney general's office.
4. The Cuban missile crisis was more dangerous than I believed. The Soviets had many more troops than the CIA believed and those troops were equipped with tactical nuclear weapons and permission to use them against an American invasion of Cuba.
5.Read more ›
Because several preceeding books have previously been written about the Kennedy brothers, readers might initially be skeptical about picking up David Talbot's work. I can affirmatively assure them that this one is a keeper for your personal library. It reads like a really good mystery book which you know just has to make it to the screen someday.
Talbot disperses some light-hearted trivia throughout his book (Jack was a forerunner of what would be known as 'metrosexual' because he would hold meetings in his underwear' and commented on the attractiveness of other men) but it is not a celebrity triva book. He provided the trivia to take readers into the complex psyches which constructed both men in eras when they were, frankly being immortalized as plastic and one-dimensional images.
A strength of Talbot's writing is that he is obviously an admirer of the Kennedy's. He gets a little too partisan at times, but comparatively appears less partisan than earlier books in the pro-Kennedy camp. Footnotes are provided at the back of the book for reference, so he's not just shooting off his mouth for the sake of it.
I was born well after the times referenced in this book, but the well-writen text took me to the places referenced and drew me in. I really understood the radical potential the Kennedy brothers had for transforming America and why the modern new right organized against them so fiercly.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The real life always have so many layers. Talbot's book helps us to walk through the conflicts around Kennedy brothers. And the things become so heavy. Read morePublished 4 days ago by Jian Huang
I was born in 1964,and learned about JFK and RFK. I even went to JFK High School. But this book brought the Kennedys to life in ways a textbook cannot. Read morePublished 12 days ago by Amazon Customer
This is a well-documented, heavily researched book that looks into what the Kennedy Years were really like in this country between JFK's election to the Presidency in 1960 and the... Read morePublished 1 month ago by KOMET
Amazing recount of the Brothers. A must read for those of us that still wonder what life might have been like...Published 2 months ago by Jeff Perreault
David Talbot has written two very important books (over 1000 pages total) on the hidden history of the United States and they both should be read by Americans wanting to understand... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Jim Loving
I loved this book. It brought them back to me again in all their complex actions. It was difficult to relive the assassinations, but I revisited that time of 'high hopes' and was... Read morePublished 4 months ago by N. Taylor
Like The Devil's Chessboard, Talbot is able to present a complex web of players and forces in well organzed, clear, and compelling prose. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Mary Bull