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Extraordinary Circumstances: The Presidency of Gerald R. Ford Hardcover – October 1, 2007

5.0 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

David Hume Kennerly won a Pulitzer Prize in 1972 for his photographs of the Vietnam War and has contributed to Time, Life, Newsweek, and Vanity Fair magazines. He is the author of four previous books and is currently a contributing editor for NBC News.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 232 pages
  • Publisher: Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin; First Edition edition (October 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0976669714
  • ISBN-13: 978-0976669715
  • Product Dimensions: 10.5 x 0.8 x 13.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,131,905 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By D. Menuez on January 4, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Aside from the stunning photography which I'll get to, this important book gave me new insights into a mostly overlooked Presidency. Kennerly documented the Ford Presidency and shows us the actual moments that some of the most significant decisions in American history were made- the Nixon pardon and leaving Vietnam to name two- thus revealing Ford as a true leader and rare politician willing to act on his beliefs regardless of consequences. (I say this as a lifelong Democrat!) As you go through the book, the range of images and perfect moments add up to a master class of great photojournalism, timeless, classic and relevant. The access he gained to intimate family moments, such as Betty Ford recovering from breast surgery, is astounding and says much about Kennerly's sensitivity and the trust he gained. It feels very emotional, intimate and world's away from our current super-posed, photo-op political culture. What is truly amazing is how easy he makes the photography look. Almost every image here is archetypal, profoundly primal, and about the subjects, not the photographer. The beauty of his work is the Zen of it; the essence of the story and person is revealed in the most graceful way. "Extraordinary Circumstances" fills an important gap in American history from a rare talent given a ringside seat, an incredible achievement.
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Format: Hardcover
David Hume-Kennerly is one of the most gifted photojournalists of our generation. He was chosen by Gerald Ford to be the "eyes of the nation on the presidency" after the insanity of paranoia that was Nixon's Whitehouse. This resulted in David becoming a "member" of the Ford family and thus having total access to the reality of The Pardon, The End of The War, and everything else that happened in those short Ford years. (As a fellow Shooter, his was the only job that I was INSANELY jealous of because he was the permanent `fly on the wall'!)

This book shares with us those times and shows us how lucky this country was to have had this strong and honest man at the top when we needed those qualities the most.

I truly hope that DHK is awarded another Pulitzer for this work.

Marshall Darling on The Cape
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Format: Hardcover
If you have ever wondered what really goes on at the White House, this is the book to buy. David Kennerly had more access to the inner workings of the White House than any other photographer, before or since. These photos certainly prove it. For any student of history, or photography, this is one book to have on your shelf. As a working photojournalist for 35 years, I have had the pleasure of working beside Kennerly and can say that besides being a great photographer, he is one of the gentlemen of the business, an old-school hero to many an up and coming photographer. Don't miss out on this book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book showcases some of David Hume Kennerly's best photography of President Ford and others around him at that time. Kennerly is not only a very gifted photographer, but according to "A Time To Heal" by President Ford, Kennerly was like a son to the President, and some senior-level staff members were unhappy that the opinion of this photographer could influence Ford's decision-making.

But that was true. It is clear that Ford and Kennerly did have a very close relationship, and Kennerly was there with his cameras every step of the way, making history through recording history. It is obvious when considering the wide range of photos here that nobody had more access to Ford than Kennerly.

The layout for this book is like a Life magazine - Kennerly lets the large photos speak for themselves, and only adds relevant background commentary where he feels it is needed.

I would recommend this book to a wide range of people - historians, Presidential buffs, photographers, or even as a gift for someone who was around during Watergate. I gave one to my dad for Christmas, and he was raving about the book to the whole family. He especially liked the candid photo of Nixon (before he resigned).

There is no other book like this on the market, and there never will be any others of this quality, because only Kennerly had the opportunity and has the talent to take pictures like these, and could produce such a high-quality work of art. Thank you for sharing these photos with us, Mr. Kennerly.
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