Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis: A Life (Wheeler Large Print Book Series) (英語) ハードカバー – Large Print, 2000/7
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She was America's sweetheart; the embodiment of grace, elegance, style, charm, and-as the world discovered in late 1963-bravery. And though much has been written about the most famous woman of the 20th century, no biography has revealed the true Jackie; none has successfully separated the truth from the lies, or portrayed the Queen of Camelot in all her complexity-until now. With access to Jackie's own writings, the archives of the John F. Kennedy Library, and those who knew her best, bestselling celebrity biographer Donald Spoto illuminates Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis and the sixty-five years of her life with candor, compassion and compelling detail. Readers will discover:
* The early years: a privileged but lonely childhood that shaped Jackie's resilience and poise, working as a photojournalist for the Washington Times-Herald, and meeting a handsome congressman named Kennedy * Life as the first lady: dealing with Jack's infidelity, adjusting to life in the spotlight, and her influence on the policies of the Kennedy Administration * Mrs. Onassis: life after Jack, marrying the Greek tycoon, her accomplished career as a book editor, her final days, and much more
WITH 16 PAGES OF STRIKING PHOTOGRAPHS
DONALD SPOTO, who earned his Ph.D. degree from Fordham University, is the author of definitive biographies of, among others, Alfred Hitchcock, Tennessee Williams, Laurence Olivier, Marlene Dietrich, Marilyn Monroe, and Ingrid Bergman. His previous book was The Hidden Jesus: A New Life. He lives in Los Angeles.
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This book is not for those interested in the dirt and dish that so mistakenly is perceived as fact when writing about the Kennedys. There is none of that here. Rather, Spoto approaches his subject with a desire to understand the person by searching for the purpose and meaning she gave to her experiences, as recounted by those who knew her best. He writes in a style that is gaceful and respectful, mirroring his life as a monk, as well as the way Mrs. Kennedy-Onassis tried to live her life.
With all her wealth, opportunity, and experiences, Spoto emphasizes that her greatest accopmlishement in this extraordinary life was simply that she was a devoted and loving mother to her two children. A complex task for us all, made more difficult by having to parent under the constant glare of public curiosity.
Perhaps the most telling passage of the book, one that speaks to the truer character of JBKO, is when she was asked why she never chose to respond to the tabliods, the critics, or myriad of others who fed off her celebrity status. In other words, to just give her side of the story! Her reply was that the dirt and gossip would continue, she could not control that, but she faithfully believed that "they can never steal my soul." Therefore, no explaination, clarification or defense was necessary.
Those who admire Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis and seek to explore the depth of her life beyond the myths, you will find this book worth reading. For those looking for something else -- keep searching.
In the chronology of this book, the event occurs a little more than two-thirds of the way through and divides a work clearly stronger when Jackie had a consensual, if still guarded, relationship with the public and the press, on whose copious coverage the book heavily relies. Spoto, who has made a reputation with biographies of Alfred Hitchcock and Laurence Olivier, is nonetheless not averse to speculation when the information simply does not exist, as when he writes,"Whether Jackie returned from Europe as a virgo intacta may never be known: On this matter, she kept her counsel."
While Spoto admits that Jackie and JFK "took to the grave the details of their private moments," he does tell us she called the President "Bunny" as a rib on his insatiable sexual appetite. Such tidbits keep a reader engaged.