Sons & Brothers: The Days of Jack and Bobby Kennedy

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Arcade Publishing, 1999 - Biography & Autobiography - 441 pages
This intriguing book brings a fresh perspective to bear on the intimate, charged partnership of John and Robert Kennedy. The author, Richard D. Mahoney, whose father was a friend of Bobby's and an appointee of Jack's, has both the academic and political experience necessary to evaluate evidence of the Kennedys' relations with the Mafia, anti-Castro rebels, and other groups lurking in the shadows of American life. He also has a sharp eye for the brothers' differing yet complementary personalities. Jack was intellectual and cheerfully cynical, with a zest for pleasure increased by a life-threatening illness concealed from the public. He looked to passionate, partisan Bobby for bulldog-like political support and used his brother as a "moral compass" when planning his administration's actions on civil rights, the corruption of organized labor, and the containment of Communism. Their powerful father, Joseph--whose deep pockets basically bought Jack the presidency and at the same time compromised it because of Joseph's links to organized crime--looms over the brothers as the author of a Faustian bargain that may well have played a role in JFK's assassination. Mahoney's vivid, compulsively readable text offers suggestive questions rather than definitive answers, but it certainly succeeds as a bracing corrective to "America's inability to see its history as tragedy," a failure Jack and Bobby emphatically did not share. --Wendy Smith

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User Review  - creighley - LibraryThing

Recently published as "The Kennedy Brothers: The Rise and Fall of Jack and Bobby." As a teenager, I swallowed the Kennedy myth hook, line, and sinker. Mahoney presents a crack in that Kennedy myth ... Read full review

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User Review  - Schmerguls - LibraryThing

This 1999 book by a man whose father was appointed ambassador to Ghana by JFK has lots of gossip and also does a fair job of listing events involving Joe kennedy and his sons. Both admirers and haters ... Read full review

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