I must be on a Kennedy kick at the moment or I am just now getting around to borrowing all of those $30 hardcover books I couldn’t afford when they first came out. In this case, I saw the made-for-TV-movie first and decided it would actually be worth a read…someday. I guess someday arrived because I checked it out of the library on my iPad and read it while running on my treadmill.
Now, I am not a huge fan of Taraborelli. There is something “tabloidy” about this guy and I tend to shy away from people who write a lot of unauthorized biographies on a wide variety of notables without having real expertise in any particular vein. I mean, if he only wrote about politicos, fine…but he doesn’t. He writes about everyone and that strikes me as unseemly. That being said, the one thing I really liked about this book is the fact that it was easy to read, did not go into a lot of minute detail and this book did give me some interesting insight into Joan and Ethel Kennedy who I really didn’t know a lot about.
Poor Ethel really wanted the big prize. It’s obvious that she really wanted to be First Lady and would have done anything to get there. Joan just wanted to be loved and I don’t quite understand what it was about her that seemed to turn off Ted Kennedy. Though it isn’t addressed, I get the feeling that Joan was the kind of girl Teddy was “supposed” to marry but as we have seen time and time again, those the established order feel we “ought” to marry are not necessarily the people we “should” marry.
Taraborelli certainly combed through all of the available information in search of content that would offer a well-rounded look into the merry wives of Camelot, but true to form he adds plenty of snark. If you have seen the movie, check it out, if the Kennedys aren’t your thing, you aren’t missing much. Borrow it if you need something to keep you occupied on vacation.