The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys: An American Saga

The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys: An American Saga PDF

The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys: An American Saga [Download] ➹ The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys: An American Saga By Doris Kearns Goodwin – Polishdarling.co.uk The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys is the sweeping history of two immigrant families, their rise to become potent political dynasties, and the marriage that brought the two together to found the most po The Fitzgeralds and and the Epub Þ the Kennedys is the sweeping history of two immigrant families, their rise to become potent political dynasties, and the marriage that brought the two together to found the most powerful family in America Drawing on unprecedented access to the family and The Fitzgeralds Epub / its private papers, Pulitzer Prize winning and bestselling historian Doris Kearns Goodwin takes readers from John Francis Honey Fitz Fitzgerald s baptism inthrough his reign as mayor of Boston, to the inauguration of his grandson as president ninety eight years later Each character emerges unforgettably Fitzgeralds and the ePUB ↠ the young, shrewdly political Rose Fitzgerald her powerful, manipulative husband, Joseph P Kennedy and the Golden Trio of Kennedy children Joe Jr Kathleen, and Jack whose promise was eclipsed by the family s legacy of tragedy Through the prism of two self made families, Goodwin reveals the ambitions and the hopes that form the fabric of the American nation.


About the Author: Doris Kearns Goodwin

DORIS KEARNS GOODWIN and the Epub Þ s interest in leadership beganthan half a century ago as a professor at Harvard Her experiences working for LBJ in the White House and later assisting him on his memoirs led to her bestselling Lyndon Johnson and the American Dream She The Fitzgeralds Epub / followed up with the Pulitzer Prize winning No Ordinary Time Franklin Eleanor Roosevelt The Home Front in World War II She earned the Lincoln Prize for the runaway bestseller Team of Rivals, the basis for Steven Spielberg s Academy Award winning film Lincoln, and the Fitzgeralds and the ePUB ↠ Carnegie Medal for The Bully Pulpit, the New York Times bestselling chronicle of the friendship between Theodore Roosevelt and William Howard Taft She lives in Concord, Massachusetts.



10 thoughts on “The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys: An American Saga

  1. Steve Steve says:

    Kearns Goodwin s The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys An American Saga was published in 1987 and remains one of the most widely read books on JFK and the Kennedy family Goodwin is a Pulitzer Prize winning author and presidential historian who has written about Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Roosevelt, LBJ, Teddy Roosevelt and William Taft.This 943 page tome is not a traditional biography of John F Kennedy and covers no part of his presidency Instead, it Kearns Goodwin s The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys An American Saga was published in 1987 and remains one of the most widely read books on JFK and the Kennedy family Goodwin is a Pulitzer Prize winning author and presidential historian who has written about Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Roosevelt, LBJ, Teddy Roosevelt and William Taft.This 943 page tome is not a traditional biography of John F Kennedy and covers no part of his presidency Instead, it is an engrossing, articulate and cleverly written narrative which chronicles much of the history of the Kennedy family, including JFK s own life up to his presidential inauguration Unfortunately, allegations of plagiarism have plagued this book and Goodwin s reputation following a 2002 article in The Weekly Standard which exposed the author s transgression.The book s forty five chapters are divided into three major sections, the first of which covers the Fitzgerald family, most notably JFK s captivating grandfather Honey Fitz and his mother Rose The second section focuses on the Kennedy family and on Joseph P Kennedy JFK s father in particular The third section follows JFK s older brother and his sister Kathleen to the end of their lives and documents Kennedy s life up to but not beyond his inauguration The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys is quite lengthy but wonderfully absorbing While it occasionally feels long winded, Goodwin s narrative creates a vibrant texture of the times which would be imperiled by aconcise format The book is consistently strong, but arguably at its best in its first section the life of Honey Fitz an enormous personality, to say the least is spectacularly fascinating and Goodwin tells his story artfully In fact, it is hard to imagine a dedicated biography of the man being any better than this.Other excellent moments include the colorful portrait Goodwin paints of immigrant life in mid 19th century Boston, her description of Joseph P Kennedy s work at a shipbuilding company during World War II and her review of his first brokerage job which served as his initiation into the world of insider trading In addition, Goodwin s portrayals of many of JFK s core family members are robust and insightful.Ironically, the book is comparatively weak revealing JFK himself While he is frequently mentioned throughout its second half, only the last hundred or so pages are dedicated to his life And much of the time what is covered of his life feels like a coherent summary rather than a detailed blow by blow Fortunately, the best chapter on JFK Shooting For a Star provides a distillation of Kennedy s essence in twenty two remarkably prescient pages.Other than its relative lack of focus on JFK which limits the degree to which the reader learns of his health issues, his notorious womanizing and his family s efforts to hide his imperfections Goodwin can be faulted for being too friendly to many of her subjects While she frequently chastises Kennedy and both of his parents for their most glaring flaws, one frequently senses that Goodwin softened the sharpest edges to avoid offending members of the Kennedy family who witnessed the book s publication and who provided her with special access tothan a hundred boxes of previously unseen materials.Overall, Doris Kearns Goodwin s The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys offers a compelling and often riveting look at the lives of JFK and several members of his family Given its tendency to summarize, rather than detail, important events in Kennedy s life and its failure to analyze his characterthoroughly, this book is imperfect as an introduction to his pre presidency But as a second or third book on Kennedy this is an excellent choice, and anyone fascinated by the life of John F Kennedy will find this book rewarding.Overall rating 4 stars


  2. Monica Monica says:

    At 800 pages plus, not counting thethan 100 pages of notes and bibliography, this book is not easy to hold, but it is hard to put down it s a great read Goodwin takes a wealth of material and infuses it with life and color, creating unforgettable portraits of people we thought we knew from history, from the press, from gossip The book covers three generations of the families, starting with Rose Kennedy s father, John Honey Fitz Fitzgerald and ending with the inauguration of John F K At 800 pages plus, not counting thethan 100 pages of notes and bibliography, this book is not easy to hold, but it is hard to put down it s a great read Goodwin takes a wealth of material and infuses it with life and color, creating unforgettable portraits of people we thought we knew from history, from the press, from gossip The book covers three generations of the families, starting with Rose Kennedy s father, John Honey Fitz Fitzgerald and ending with the inauguration of John F Kennedy as President It is at its base an immigrant story of the progress from discrimination, to acceptance, to ascendancy The characters could have been designed for a made for tv movie, but Goodwin, with low key rather than melodramatic narrative, makes them real three dimensional human beings, favored and flawed, moving through and helping to shape American history for over a century.Honey Fitz was the consummate Irish pol, larger than life, full of stories, generous to a fault, massively corrupt Rose was his favorite daughter, sent off to a convent school because it would improve her father s political standing, standing in for his remote, unhappy wife as she got older The Ladies of the Sacred Heart gave Rose an excellent education and a lifelong habit of unquestioning obedience to church laws At one point when her son John was running for office, she contacted the Cardinal to see how to remove Les Miserables and Balzac both on the Index of Forbidden Books from her library She consoled herself for her husband s long absences and infidelities with her church and her children, expensive trips, and expensive clothes.Joe Kennedy was a supremely gifted and utterly amoral businessman, the youngest bank president in the country, a self made millionaire any times over, first chairman of the SEC, and a disastrous ambassador to England in the difficult years just before WWII His only business priority other than profit was the welfare of his family He was a demanding, domineering yet devoted father While he was apart from his children for much of the time, he wrote each of them often and fondly, commenting on their studies, hobbies and friends As they grew older, he kept close track of them having his people check out their friends and lovers for suitability He directed and managed all of them in a way that acted as though there was no daylight between what was good for him and what was best for them Through his whole life, he was keenly aware of and deeply resentful of the slights he experienced as an Irish Catholic, determined that his children would not have that same experience Joe and Rose had a strange marriage by today s lights he was a compulsive womanizer while she believed that sex was only for procreation when that was not possible, there was no sex, whether married or not Whether she knew of the scope of his infidelities or not, she never admitted she was always secure in her role as wife, knowing that divorce was unthinkable, a mortal sin.Their nine children take up less of the book Of the nine, Joe Jr., Jack and Kathleen occupy most of that part of the book The wartime tragedies and heroics and the post War politics are richly described.Goodwin s skills as a researcher and her gifts as a writer make this book a truly rich reading experience and an illuminating look at the personalities, the politics, and the history of a significant segment of our past


  3. Dottie Dottie says:

    I was 12 when John F Kennedy gained the Whitehouse I knew nothing of politics, but I fell in love with Jackie Kennedy s persona His assassination happened when I was 15, and like most other people, it left an imprint on my life I have heard many documentaries on JFK, some pro and some con I wanted to hear the truth from this book Doris always tells both sides I love Doris Kearns Goodwin s books I love the way she writes history She not only tells what is happening in the Kennedy and Fit I was 12 when John F Kennedy gained the Whitehouse I knew nothing of politics, but I fell in love with Jackie Kennedy s persona His assassination happened when I was 15, and like most other people, it left an imprint on my life I have heard many documentaries on JFK, some pro and some con I wanted to hear the truth from this book Doris always tells both sides I love Doris Kearns Goodwin s books I love the way she writes history She not only tells what is happening in the Kennedy and Fitzgerald s lives, she fits it into the history of the nation and even the world She is so thorough in her telling that you feel like you have taken a college course in history, however, she teaches through stories I went to a book signing on Lincoln Team of Rivals, and she said that she gets irritated with history teachers who make history dull by date memorization, etc She feels that if you teach the stories that comprise the history, the dates and important facts will be automatically infused in student brains So her books are detailed stories that keep me wantingI also think she tells the truth whatever it may be She praised Joe Kennedy for his his few good qualities but continued on to help us understand his flaws and perhaps reasons for them, but she did not sugar coat anything.I loved learning the history of Boston, the Irish immigrants, the politics of this whole era


  4. Christina Dudley Christina Dudley says:

    Another Kearns Goodwin book I thought I d be reading the rest of my life, but I was completely enthralled whenever I picked it up The author treats her subjects with thoughtfulness and compassion, even when they do questionable things, something I very much appreciate The history of 19th century Boston is fascinating, and when I was watching the Mariners play the Red Sox at Fenway Park, and they mentioned it being built on John Fitzgerald s watch, it was like all things becoming one, and a riv Another Kearns Goodwin book I thought I d be reading the rest of my life, but I was completely enthralled whenever I picked it up The author treats her subjects with thoughtfulness and compassion, even when they do questionable things, something I very much appreciate The history of 19th century Boston is fascinating, and when I was watching the Mariners play the Red Sox at Fenway Park, and they mentioned it being built on John Fitzgerald s watch, it was like all things becoming one, and a river running through them.I was only sorry this history wasn t LONGER The assassinations receive a footnote style paragraph, and because the book was published in 1987, everything that s happened since then is nowhere to be found Could the Kennedys celebrating JFK s inauguration ever have pictured themselves onstage at Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger s gubernatorial campaign, backing him because he was Eunice s daughter Maria s fella


  5. Kathy Kathy says:

    The book goes way back several generations and you realize the dynasty of the Kennedys JFK didn t just decide he wanted to be president one day, it was bred into him.


  6. Regina Regina says:

    This book has been on the family room bookshelf for years I admit it was voyeuristic self indulgence that finally made me take it down and read it late this summer.The book is very long In three separate parts, it could have been published as three separate volumes The first section the rise of Honey Fitz is the best I found it to be informative and entertaining and I like Doris Kearn Goodwin s conversational style of prose The descriptions of old Boston and the political system of part This book has been on the family room bookshelf for years I admit it was voyeuristic self indulgence that finally made me take it down and read it late this summer.The book is very long In three separate parts, it could have been published as three separate volumes The first section the rise of Honey Fitz is the best I found it to be informative and entertaining and I like Doris Kearn Goodwin s conversational style of prose The descriptions of old Boston and the political system of party bosses and cronyism were particularly good The second section deals with Joe Kennedy s rise to fame and fortune Again, Goodwin covers interesting subject matter with some great historical anecdotes However, I felt the book started to lose its steam in this section Certain passages were repetitive and the author engaged in speculation about the family members that somehow seemed out of place When sentences began with one can only imagine how , I felt the book was deviating from serious historical journalism I understand that Goodwin is trying to make historyinteresting to the lay reader with this type of speculation but I sometimes found it to be distracting.The final section on the golden trio of young Joe, Jack and Kathleen was the weakest part of the book Maybe my reaction to this final section is because 1 I had already been through almost five hundred pages of Kennedy family history and wanted to move on to the pile of unread night table books or 2 there has been so much written on the third generation already And while the first two sections aim to be definitive, the third seems almost superficial in its treatment of subject.I have enjoyed other works by Doris Kearns Goodwin Her volume on the Roosevelts and the WWII home front No Ordinary Time was outstanding The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys was not at the same level I would still recommend it to anyone interested in the history of the Kennedy family prior to the third generation However, it can certainly be read in the installment plan


  7. Sarita Sarita says:

    I m pretty sure that the Pulitzer she got for this was a reflection of how brave and hardworking she had to be to get backstory on the Kennedys Fitzgeralds at the time when it was written There s no shock, now, in thinking of Jack Kennedy as connected to the vote fixers in Boston and Chicago, for instance Learningabout the family s ethos and history is helpful to understanding their influence and role, but there was a lot of Mrs Kennedy must have feltand We can t help but wond I m pretty sure that the Pulitzer she got for this was a reflection of how brave and hardworking she had to be to get backstory on the Kennedys Fitzgeralds at the time when it was written There s no shock, now, in thinking of Jack Kennedy as connected to the vote fixers in Boston and Chicago, for instance Learningabout the family s ethos and history is helpful to understanding their influence and role, but there was a lot of Mrs Kennedy must have feltand We can t help but wonder if he thought I think DKG has a powerful understanding of the human psyche, but it wasguess work than I prefer


  8. Elizabeth Olsen Elizabeth Olsen says:

    I love this book I am actively reading it It is obviously about the Kennedy s and Fitzgeralds, and I did not think it would interest me at all but I might actually like Doris Kearns Goodwinthat David McCullough..


  9. Christine Ward Christine Ward says:

    It s been many years since I read this book over a decade, I think and either time has been kind to this monumental biography, or my perspective has changed with regard to this book and the families that are immortalized within its pages.Through exhaustive research, Goodwin narrates the tale of two families the Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys from their respective beginnings in America to the inauguration of JFK and through it all, she manages to retain a highly effective storytelling ton It s been many years since I read this book over a decade, I think and either time has been kind to this monumental biography, or my perspective has changed with regard to this book and the families that are immortalized within its pages.Through exhaustive research, Goodwin narrates the tale of two families the Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys from their respective beginnings in America to the inauguration of JFK and through it all, she manages to retain a highly effective storytelling tone to this narration that is key to the best biographies and other works of non fiction While people may think they know about the Kennedys, Goodwin truly exposes all of that family s history, in a sympathetic tone, it s true, but not overtly so or in the very least sycophantic Perhaps the most surprising thing for the reader to learn is that JFK, while a fascinating figure in his own right as the many books about him and his presidency can attest to , is not the most fascinating member of this family Some readers might find the patriarch, Joseph P Kennedy, to be that person, while others might find the tragic tales of Joseph Jr or Kathleen to be that person The only flaw , if one can call it that, is that Goodwin spends the bulk of her collective biography on the earlier years of the family s history many pages are devoted to John Fitzgerald, his daughter Rose, Joseph P Kennedy, and the golden trio of Joseph Jr., JFK, and Kathleen while the younger children are littlethan an afterthought Still, I recognize that there are limitations to any book, and given that Goodwin makes the decision to end the book with JFK s inauguration, it s very possible the book would not have worked as well if Goodwin had given equal time to the younger siblings, whose trajectories in life would never take them as far as the Presidency.This is a brilliant biography, and also a monumental work of history Highly recommended


  10. Elizabeth Elizabeth says:

    Doris Kearns Goodwin is a wonder historian, bringing the experiences of her subjects to life This book, written in 1987, describes the immigration experiences of the two Irish families who, in a short period of time, gave us an iconic President and a powerful political family The story itself is inspiring exceptional immigrants to use their wits to succeed in America I wonder if it were written now if the author would have been so easy on the protagonistsFitzerald and Joseph Kennedy Sr S Doris Kearns Goodwin is a wonder historian, bringing the experiences of her subjects to life This book, written in 1987, describes the immigration experiences of the two Irish families who, in a short period of time, gave us an iconic President and a powerful political family The story itself is inspiring exceptional immigrants to use their wits to succeed in America I wonder if it were written now if the author would have been so easy on the protagonistsFitzerald and Joseph Kennedy Sr She doesn t hide their flaws, nor their rise to power in the corrupt Boston of the early twentieth century, but I feel as if they would not have been seen through such rose colored glasses if the book were written now.Rose Kennedy s religion sustained her through many tragedies and her husband s transgressions, but her natural exuberance and intelligence seem to have been sacrificed I look forward to reading the new book about Joseph Kennedy and see if twenty years has changed the tenor of the writing of history.This book is well worth the reading It is a look at the politics of the early century and explains in some ways how we got where we are


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10 thoughts on “The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys: An American Saga

  1. Steve Steve says:

    Kearns Goodwin s The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys An American Saga was published in 1987 and remains one of the most widely read books on JFK and the Kennedy family Goodwin is a Pulitzer Prize winning author and presidential historian who has written about Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Roosevelt, LBJ, Teddy Roosevelt and William Taft.This 943 page tome is not a traditional biography of John F Kennedy and covers no part of his presidency Instead, it Kearns Goodwin s The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys An American Saga was published in 1987 and remains one of the most widely read books on JFK and the Kennedy family Goodwin is a Pulitzer Prize winning author and presidential historian who has written about Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Roosevelt, LBJ, Teddy Roosevelt and William Taft.This 943 page tome is not a traditional biography of John F Kennedy and covers no part of his presidency Instead, it is an engrossing, articulate and cleverly written narrative which chronicles much of the history of the Kennedy family, including JFK s own life up to his presidential inauguration Unfortunately, allegations of plagiarism have plagued this book and Goodwin s reputation following a 2002 article in The Weekly Standard which exposed the author s transgression.The book s forty five chapters are divided into three major sections, the first of which covers the Fitzgerald family, most notably JFK s captivating grandfather Honey Fitz and his mother Rose The second section focuses on the Kennedy family and on Joseph P Kennedy JFK s father in particular The third section follows JFK s older brother and his sister Kathleen to the end of their lives and documents Kennedy s life up to but not beyond his inauguration The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys is quite lengthy but wonderfully absorbing While it occasionally feels long winded, Goodwin s narrative creates a vibrant texture of the times which would be imperiled by aconcise format The book is consistently strong, but arguably at its best in its first section the life of Honey Fitz an enormous personality, to say the least is spectacularly fascinating and Goodwin tells his story artfully In fact, it is hard to imagine a dedicated biography of the man being any better than this.Other excellent moments include the colorful portrait Goodwin paints of immigrant life in mid 19th century Boston, her description of Joseph P Kennedy s work at a shipbuilding company during World War II and her review of his first brokerage job which served as his initiation into the world of insider trading In addition, Goodwin s portrayals of many of JFK s core family members are robust and insightful.Ironically, the book is comparatively weak revealing JFK himself While he is frequently mentioned throughout its second half, only the last hundred or so pages are dedicated to his life And much of the time what is covered of his life feels like a coherent summary rather than a detailed blow by blow Fortunately, the best chapter on JFK Shooting For a Star provides a distillation of Kennedy s essence in twenty two remarkably prescient pages.Other than its relative lack of focus on JFK which limits the degree to which the reader learns of his health issues, his notorious womanizing and his family s efforts to hide his imperfections Goodwin can be faulted for being too friendly to many of her subjects While she frequently chastises Kennedy and both of his parents for their most glaring flaws, one frequently senses that Goodwin softened the sharpest edges to avoid offending members of the Kennedy family who witnessed the book s publication and who provided her with special access tothan a hundred boxes of previously unseen materials.Overall, Doris Kearns Goodwin s The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys offers a compelling and often riveting look at the lives of JFK and several members of his family Given its tendency to summarize, rather than detail, important events in Kennedy s life and its failure to analyze his characterthoroughly, this book is imperfect as an introduction to his pre presidency But as a second or third book on Kennedy this is an excellent choice, and anyone fascinated by the life of John F Kennedy will find this book rewarding.Overall rating 4 stars


  2. Monica Monica says:

    At 800 pages plus, not counting thethan 100 pages of notes and bibliography, this book is not easy to hold, but it is hard to put down it s a great read Goodwin takes a wealth of material and infuses it with life and color, creating unforgettable portraits of people we thought we knew from history, from the press, from gossip The book covers three generations of the families, starting with Rose Kennedy s father, John Honey Fitz Fitzgerald and ending with the inauguration of John F K At 800 pages plus, not counting thethan 100 pages of notes and bibliography, this book is not easy to hold, but it is hard to put down it s a great read Goodwin takes a wealth of material and infuses it with life and color, creating unforgettable portraits of people we thought we knew from history, from the press, from gossip The book covers three generations of the families, starting with Rose Kennedy s father, John Honey Fitz Fitzgerald and ending with the inauguration of John F Kennedy as President It is at its base an immigrant story of the progress from discrimination, to acceptance, to ascendancy The characters could have been designed for a made for tv movie, but Goodwin, with low key rather than melodramatic narrative, makes them real three dimensional human beings, favored and flawed, moving through and helping to shape American history for over a century.Honey Fitz was the consummate Irish pol, larger than life, full of stories, generous to a fault, massively corrupt Rose was his favorite daughter, sent off to a convent school because it would improve her father s political standing, standing in for his remote, unhappy wife as she got older The Ladies of the Sacred Heart gave Rose an excellent education and a lifelong habit of unquestioning obedience to church laws At one point when her son John was running for office, she contacted the Cardinal to see how to remove Les Miserables and Balzac both on the Index of Forbidden Books from her library She consoled herself for her husband s long absences and infidelities with her church and her children, expensive trips, and expensive clothes.Joe Kennedy was a supremely gifted and utterly amoral businessman, the youngest bank president in the country, a self made millionaire any times over, first chairman of the SEC, and a disastrous ambassador to England in the difficult years just before WWII His only business priority other than profit was the welfare of his family He was a demanding, domineering yet devoted father While he was apart from his children for much of the time, he wrote each of them often and fondly, commenting on their studies, hobbies and friends As they grew older, he kept close track of them having his people check out their friends and lovers for suitability He directed and managed all of them in a way that acted as though there was no daylight between what was good for him and what was best for them Through his whole life, he was keenly aware of and deeply resentful of the slights he experienced as an Irish Catholic, determined that his children would not have that same experience Joe and Rose had a strange marriage by today s lights he was a compulsive womanizer while she believed that sex was only for procreation when that was not possible, there was no sex, whether married or not Whether she knew of the scope of his infidelities or not, she never admitted she was always secure in her role as wife, knowing that divorce was unthinkable, a mortal sin.Their nine children take up less of the book Of the nine, Joe Jr., Jack and Kathleen occupy most of that part of the book The wartime tragedies and heroics and the post War politics are richly described.Goodwin s skills as a researcher and her gifts as a writer make this book a truly rich reading experience and an illuminating look at the personalities, the politics, and the history of a significant segment of our past


  3. Dottie Dottie says:

    I was 12 when John F Kennedy gained the Whitehouse I knew nothing of politics, but I fell in love with Jackie Kennedy s persona His assassination happened when I was 15, and like most other people, it left an imprint on my life I have heard many documentaries on JFK, some pro and some con I wanted to hear the truth from this book Doris always tells both sides I love Doris Kearns Goodwin s books I love the way she writes history She not only tells what is happening in the Kennedy and Fit I was 12 when John F Kennedy gained the Whitehouse I knew nothing of politics, but I fell in love with Jackie Kennedy s persona His assassination happened when I was 15, and like most other people, it left an imprint on my life I have heard many documentaries on JFK, some pro and some con I wanted to hear the truth from this book Doris always tells both sides I love Doris Kearns Goodwin s books I love the way she writes history She not only tells what is happening in the Kennedy and Fitzgerald s lives, she fits it into the history of the nation and even the world She is so thorough in her telling that you feel like you have taken a college course in history, however, she teaches through stories I went to a book signing on Lincoln Team of Rivals, and she said that she gets irritated with history teachers who make history dull by date memorization, etc She feels that if you teach the stories that comprise the history, the dates and important facts will be automatically infused in student brains So her books are detailed stories that keep me wantingI also think she tells the truth whatever it may be She praised Joe Kennedy for his his few good qualities but continued on to help us understand his flaws and perhaps reasons for them, but she did not sugar coat anything.I loved learning the history of Boston, the Irish immigrants, the politics of this whole era


  4. Christina Dudley Christina Dudley says:

    Another Kearns Goodwin book I thought I d be reading the rest of my life, but I was completely enthralled whenever I picked it up The author treats her subjects with thoughtfulness and compassion, even when they do questionable things, something I very much appreciate The history of 19th century Boston is fascinating, and when I was watching the Mariners play the Red Sox at Fenway Park, and they mentioned it being built on John Fitzgerald s watch, it was like all things becoming one, and a riv Another Kearns Goodwin book I thought I d be reading the rest of my life, but I was completely enthralled whenever I picked it up The author treats her subjects with thoughtfulness and compassion, even when they do questionable things, something I very much appreciate The history of 19th century Boston is fascinating, and when I was watching the Mariners play the Red Sox at Fenway Park, and they mentioned it being built on John Fitzgerald s watch, it was like all things becoming one, and a river running through them.I was only sorry this history wasn t LONGER The assassinations receive a footnote style paragraph, and because the book was published in 1987, everything that s happened since then is nowhere to be found Could the Kennedys celebrating JFK s inauguration ever have pictured themselves onstage at Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger s gubernatorial campaign, backing him because he was Eunice s daughter Maria s fella


  5. Kathy Kathy says:

    The book goes way back several generations and you realize the dynasty of the Kennedys JFK didn t just decide he wanted to be president one day, it was bred into him.


  6. Regina Regina says:

    This book has been on the family room bookshelf for years I admit it was voyeuristic self indulgence that finally made me take it down and read it late this summer.The book is very long In three separate parts, it could have been published as three separate volumes The first section the rise of Honey Fitz is the best I found it to be informative and entertaining and I like Doris Kearn Goodwin s conversational style of prose The descriptions of old Boston and the political system of part This book has been on the family room bookshelf for years I admit it was voyeuristic self indulgence that finally made me take it down and read it late this summer.The book is very long In three separate parts, it could have been published as three separate volumes The first section the rise of Honey Fitz is the best I found it to be informative and entertaining and I like Doris Kearn Goodwin s conversational style of prose The descriptions of old Boston and the political system of party bosses and cronyism were particularly good The second section deals with Joe Kennedy s rise to fame and fortune Again, Goodwin covers interesting subject matter with some great historical anecdotes However, I felt the book started to lose its steam in this section Certain passages were repetitive and the author engaged in speculation about the family members that somehow seemed out of place When sentences began with one can only imagine how , I felt the book was deviating from serious historical journalism I understand that Goodwin is trying to make historyinteresting to the lay reader with this type of speculation but I sometimes found it to be distracting.The final section on the golden trio of young Joe, Jack and Kathleen was the weakest part of the book Maybe my reaction to this final section is because 1 I had already been through almost five hundred pages of Kennedy family history and wanted to move on to the pile of unread night table books or 2 there has been so much written on the third generation already And while the first two sections aim to be definitive, the third seems almost superficial in its treatment of subject.I have enjoyed other works by Doris Kearns Goodwin Her volume on the Roosevelts and the WWII home front No Ordinary Time was outstanding The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys was not at the same level I would still recommend it to anyone interested in the history of the Kennedy family prior to the third generation However, it can certainly be read in the installment plan


  7. Sarita Sarita says:

    I m pretty sure that the Pulitzer she got for this was a reflection of how brave and hardworking she had to be to get backstory on the Kennedys Fitzgeralds at the time when it was written There s no shock, now, in thinking of Jack Kennedy as connected to the vote fixers in Boston and Chicago, for instance Learningabout the family s ethos and history is helpful to understanding their influence and role, but there was a lot of Mrs Kennedy must have feltand We can t help but wond I m pretty sure that the Pulitzer she got for this was a reflection of how brave and hardworking she had to be to get backstory on the Kennedys Fitzgeralds at the time when it was written There s no shock, now, in thinking of Jack Kennedy as connected to the vote fixers in Boston and Chicago, for instance Learningabout the family s ethos and history is helpful to understanding their influence and role, but there was a lot of Mrs Kennedy must have feltand We can t help but wonder if he thought I think DKG has a powerful understanding of the human psyche, but it wasguess work than I prefer


  8. Elizabeth Olsen Elizabeth Olsen says:

    I love this book I am actively reading it It is obviously about the Kennedy s and Fitzgeralds, and I did not think it would interest me at all but I might actually like Doris Kearns Goodwinthat David McCullough..


  9. Christine Ward Christine Ward says:

    It s been many years since I read this book over a decade, I think and either time has been kind to this monumental biography, or my perspective has changed with regard to this book and the families that are immortalized within its pages.Through exhaustive research, Goodwin narrates the tale of two families the Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys from their respective beginnings in America to the inauguration of JFK and through it all, she manages to retain a highly effective storytelling ton It s been many years since I read this book over a decade, I think and either time has been kind to this monumental biography, or my perspective has changed with regard to this book and the families that are immortalized within its pages.Through exhaustive research, Goodwin narrates the tale of two families the Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys from their respective beginnings in America to the inauguration of JFK and through it all, she manages to retain a highly effective storytelling tone to this narration that is key to the best biographies and other works of non fiction While people may think they know about the Kennedys, Goodwin truly exposes all of that family s history, in a sympathetic tone, it s true, but not overtly so or in the very least sycophantic Perhaps the most surprising thing for the reader to learn is that JFK, while a fascinating figure in his own right as the many books about him and his presidency can attest to , is not the most fascinating member of this family Some readers might find the patriarch, Joseph P Kennedy, to be that person, while others might find the tragic tales of Joseph Jr or Kathleen to be that person The only flaw , if one can call it that, is that Goodwin spends the bulk of her collective biography on the earlier years of the family s history many pages are devoted to John Fitzgerald, his daughter Rose, Joseph P Kennedy, and the golden trio of Joseph Jr., JFK, and Kathleen while the younger children are littlethan an afterthought Still, I recognize that there are limitations to any book, and given that Goodwin makes the decision to end the book with JFK s inauguration, it s very possible the book would not have worked as well if Goodwin had given equal time to the younger siblings, whose trajectories in life would never take them as far as the Presidency.This is a brilliant biography, and also a monumental work of history Highly recommended


  10. Elizabeth Elizabeth says:

    Doris Kearns Goodwin is a wonder historian, bringing the experiences of her subjects to life This book, written in 1987, describes the immigration experiences of the two Irish families who, in a short period of time, gave us an iconic President and a powerful political family The story itself is inspiring exceptional immigrants to use their wits to succeed in America I wonder if it were written now if the author would have been so easy on the protagonistsFitzerald and Joseph Kennedy Sr S Doris Kearns Goodwin is a wonder historian, bringing the experiences of her subjects to life This book, written in 1987, describes the immigration experiences of the two Irish families who, in a short period of time, gave us an iconic President and a powerful political family The story itself is inspiring exceptional immigrants to use their wits to succeed in America I wonder if it were written now if the author would have been so easy on the protagonistsFitzerald and Joseph Kennedy Sr She doesn t hide their flaws, nor their rise to power in the corrupt Boston of the early twentieth century, but I feel as if they would not have been seen through such rose colored glasses if the book were written now.Rose Kennedy s religion sustained her through many tragedies and her husband s transgressions, but her natural exuberance and intelligence seem to have been sacrificed I look forward to reading the new book about Joseph Kennedy and see if twenty years has changed the tenor of the writing of history.This book is well worth the reading It is a look at the politics of the early century and explains in some ways how we got where we are


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