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Once Upon a Secret: My Affair with President John F. Kennedy and Its Aftermath Hardcover – February 8, 2012
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“With the benefit of hindsight and good old-fashioned maturity, [Mimi Alford] writes not just about the secret, but the corrosive effect of keeping that secret. . . . You can’t help liking her, or her elegant and thoroughly good-natured book.”—The Spectator
“What [Alford] sacrificed in lucre she has more than recovered in credibility and dignity.”—The Washington Times
“Compelling . . . a polished voice telling a credible story you can take to the bank.”—Seattle Post-Intelligencer
“Explosive . . . searingly candid.”—New York Post
About the Author
Mimi Alford lives in western Massachusetts with her husband, Dick. Together they have seven grandchildren. This is her first book.
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Top customer reviews
Unlike Marilyn Monroe, she never expected the affair to become anything serious. However during the affair the author met and fell in love with her future husband, leaving Alford in the dilemma of having to balance 2 lives, her affair with JFK (JFK knew about her boyfriend) and her courtship with Tony. However her affair with JFK was toned down due to Jackie's continuous presence at the White House as she was pregnant with their 3rd child Patrick Bouvier Kennedy, who unfortunately dies 2 days after his birth in August 1963. We are given a glimpse to the human side of JFK, such as his grief and tears upon the death of his baby and how it had evoked a renewed sense of responsibility towards his wife and family. JFK even gave her an engagement present. Alford recalled her last meeting with JFK in New York a week before his assassination. Despite the end of their sexual affair, his exterior friendly mood and attitude towards her never wavered. He gave her $300 to buy anything she wanted, it was his wedding present to her. Even though he was disappointed in the conservative choice she picked, nevertheless he gave her a long hug and told her that he was going to call her after his trip to Texas (made me tear up). She was supposed to join him on the trip but was dropped from the roster due to the First Lady making a last minute decision to join her husband on the trip.
Her affair with JFK returned to haunt her on 22 November 1963 when JFK was assassinated in Dallas. Initially in denial about the president's death, upon seeing JFK's casket being carried out of Air Force One on broadcasted on tv, she tearfully broke down and confessed to her fiancé about her affair with him. Instead of ending the engagement, he barred her from mentioning anything related to JFK, or inform anyone about the affair. To erase reminders of her affair with JFK to appease her husband, she gave away his gifts and destroyed an autographed photo of JFK. This submissive attitude and other unresolved issues lead to the deterioration of their marriage in later years as it was revealed that Tony never forgave her for the affair with JFK. Over the years after the divorce, Alford went through a journey of self-discovery and reassurance, which is admirable as she took the bull by the horns and finally took charge of her life. Kudos to her for a good book showing that it's never too late to speak out or to stand up for one's self. This is especially highly recommended for those who want to know more about JFK.
All in all, it was a good read.
Most recent customer reviews
Nice quick read!!