In the High Peaks

Saturday, November 23, 2013

My JFK Most Notables and German Literature Month

Yes, being a Boston girl (before moving to the ADKs in 2005), from an Irish Catholic family on my father's side, and having been enthralled with JFK since his 1960 campaign when I was a mere seven years old, I have been collecting quality JFK books for all of my life.

To my mind, the most authoritative sources on JFK's public and political and presidential life:

Robert Dallek   An Unfinished Life: John F. Kennedy, 1917-1963
Richard Reeves. President Kennedy: Profile of Power
Arthur Schlesinger, Jr. A Thousand Days.
David Talbot. Brothers: The Hidden History of the Kennedy Years

Quality books regarding all the conspiracy theories:
Reclaiming History: The Assassination of John F. Kennedy by Vincent Bugliosi (1648 pages)
An exhaustive (sigh!) examination of every speck of evidence, every conspiracy theory, etc.

I would add this year's publication of Philip Shenon's A Cruel and Shocking Act to this quality conspiracy list, absolutely. An incredible work of investigative journalism, although Shenon is not an historian.

German Literature Month:
I'm finishing Demian by Herman Hesse tomorrow morning. A 5-star reading experience! My review will be up on Sunday or Monday.

And, I can't believe it! I'm reading a fifth German literature title to finish the month. I'm ecstatic! I'm reading Gudrun Pausewang, a renowned German children's and YA author. I've started to read the YA novel The Traitor, published in the U.S. in 2011. I've downloaded it onto my Nook--its main storyline is about a young German (Sudentanland) girl who protects a wounded Russian soldier. I have much more to say about it!!


  1. I have Jack: A Life Like no Other by Geoffrey Perret on my tbr pile. Hoping it will be a good read. Some of your recs look interesting so I will check those out.

    1. Hi, Cath,
      I haven't read the one you mention, but I remember one riveting title by an eminent historian--so readable and fascinating. It was The Fitzgeralds and The Kennedys by Doris Kearns Goodwin. Scrupulously accurate AND very readable and entertaining. I so highly recommend it. I adored it.


  2. I'm interested in reading more about the conspiracy theories, but 1600+ pages is just too daunting. Think I'll look into the newer A Cruel and Shocking Act instead.

    1. Hi, JoAnn,
      I agree with you completely. If you wish to limit the number of pages and cut to the chase, then the Shenon book is for you, in my estimation. I feel confident that his hypotheses match mine.
      Fascinating reading!