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It is not perhaps a book that delves deeply into anything. I was most interested in finding out why Ted
agreed with the Warren report's findings about how his brother died. Surely, being an intelligent man
and an attorney he knew they were wrong. Perhaps, he was content to let it lie rather than tilt at
windmills like Don Quixote. There really was nothing much about it at all, so I was disappointed. I was
interested in reading the book because I was an 8 year old when JFK was murdered and it really
affected me very seriously. I needed there to be a Camelot at that time in my life when so much was
not going well for me. There were other interesting parts of this book because I am a student of
history. While I know that Senator Kennedy was a flawed human being as are all of us, I believe he
redeemed himself with all of the legislation he fought for. There would be so much less to be thankful
for as Americans if he had not served. All of the Kennedy children with the obvious exception of
Rosemary chose to serve their country in many different ways. Politicians, activists, creators of
organizations we would not have if it were not for them like Special Olympics and the Peace Corps.
They did not have to put themselves out there. They could have done like a lot of other super rich
people and just been selfish with their money and their time. I am no Kennedy lover or hater. I am a
student of history and this is a family that with it's good and bad will be in our history books. There
were things Ted Kennedy did that were very bad. On the other hand there were things he did that
were very good. Even with his busy schedule he went with his daughter for her chemotherapy
treatments and to church, one day a week he read to a poor child, and he was there for all the
nephews and nieces who had lost their fathers to assassins. Each niece was walked down the
aisle on her wedding day by Uncle Ted. He was at every graduation and important event in all
the family's lives. That counts for something. I think in these comments and reviews too much has
already been said about the negative things that were a part of his life. Only God is allowed to
judge Ted. We can say what we think, but it really doesn't matter. I thought a lot of the book was
boring and repetitive, but I would still recommend it.
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on September 15, 2017
This book is a treasure. I enjoyed reading it from cover to cover. The writing is elegant and straightforward. The stories of personal family and friend relationships are moving. . Hearing about politics and history from a true statesman's perspective is insightful. Reading from the perspective of a Kennedy child as he grew to be the Kennedy patriarch is inspiring. I look forward to reading this memoir again. I have recommended to many peope.
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on January 25, 2016
I came away liking Edward Kennedy far more than I had liked him by knowing what I had read about him. Then I realized that is exactly what I was meant to feel. He is far more interesting, embracing, warm, and winning than I had credited my understanding of him to be; and what perplexed me was his frequent glossing over of the other side of the story. Of JFK, Bobby, and the incidents that shaped the rest of the family's struggles, the heroes are always the Kennedys. I believe that and strongly support that view. But I would have liked a bit of flesh on the bone.

It is a shame that we lost such a great statesman and such a noble gentleman; but this memoir doesn't paint the full picture of the events that shaped our nation, my life, and his family.
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I was disappointed that Kennedy didn't talk about working with his son Patrick who was a congressman. They had spent time on committees and worked together for health care reform especially for mental illness. I did enjoy learning about his childhood and some funny stories about and with his brothers Jack and Bobby.
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on February 14, 2014
This is one book that I will buy in hard cover. Kennedys openly honest approach to the challenges he has faced in his life are what I'd expect from this man, who finally found his niche in his over-achieving family after years of struggle and growth. I enjoyed reading about it and miss the "Lion of the Senate" since he left us to join his brothers before him. RIP, Senator Kennedy!
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on January 10, 2015
Very well written, and readable, unlike many autobiographies. Lots of fun, lots of drama. A story of American history that was lived by Ted Kennedy. It's a story of courage and determination in the face of tragedy and sometimes defeat. He accomplished so much by sticking to his guns.
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on February 16, 2014
Great story. Was never a Ted Kennedy fan, but read a lot about the family. Many,many books about different members of this family. Completely taken off that I liked this story so much. Very enjoyable and fun to read. Have a new respect for what he stood for, his art of agreeing to disagree and for putting his faults on the front line. WOULD RECOMMEND THIS BOOK FOR A GOOD EXCEPTIONAL READ.
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on November 20, 2009
I don't know what kind of an effort was required of the ailing Kennedy to finish the book. It is astonishing that he did. Sadly, however, it is only the first part of the book--Kennedy's childhood and youth--that really zips through with life and rigor. In this early part, the remarkable character of the Kennedy family is illumined from within. According to this book, Kennedy's father was a most impressive person, for he knew how to mix discipline and love in his relationships with his children. Most memorable is his letter to his son Ted that said that if he, Ted, wasn't serious about life, that was fine: his father would continue to love him, but he wouldn't have much time for him. Indeed, Ted Kennedy became serious about life and eventually climbed out of the pit of his own failures and vanity. Furthermore, what is most inspiring in Ted's rendition of his father (especially in view of today's unrestrained greed) is the fact that the father was rich, and the children could have just spent their time drinking and playing tennis, but they were all taught the importance of discipline, commitment, and service. The descriptions of the young Jack, Bobby, and Teddy, their struggles, their good-natured humor, their love of the sea (which, in this book, is described in its multitudinous shapes and sounds) and, particularly, their love and loyalty for each other are detailed, energetic, and lovely. Precious, too, for who but Ted Kennedy could evoke the laughter of Jack, or the studiousness of Bobby? Most members of the family, and their early tragic losses, come to life richly, and this, in my view, is the main value of the book.
Ted Kennedy's adult life, as one of the reviewers has pointed out, is not as captivating. In fact, there are many dull pages and endless lists of senate meetings, bills, parades, and campaigns. These, of course, could be made interesting too, but the writing fails the reader here. Particularly disappointing are Ted's reactions to the assassinations of his brothers. Altogether, it seems that the emotional vibrancy of the earlier chapters has somehow left the book, and that's a great pity.
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on December 21, 2017
Have just started reading, so far, I like it. Miss him as he was truly one of the Lions in the Senate! The courtesy is greatly missing in the current Legislative branch of the US Government!
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on December 29, 2014
Sad & wonderful to see what a moral, responsible and hardworking government servant can be. If only those qualities still existed in government today. He had his faults and failures, along with more tragedy than anyone should bear, but remained a passionate optimist.
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