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American Adulterer: A Novel Audio CD – Audiobook, CD, Unabridged


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Product details

  • Audio CD
  • Publisher: Tantor Media, Inc; Unabridged edition (22 Sept. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1400113679
  • ISBN-13: 978-1400113675
  • Product Dimensions: 16.3 x 2.8 x 13.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 6,058,472 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Jed Mercurio is a novelist who regularly works in TV as a writer, producer and director. His books are Bodies (2002), Ascent (2007), American Adulterer (2009) and, for children, the Penguin Expedition (2003). He grew up in England and currently splits his work between London and Los Angeles.

Mercurio trained at the University of Birmingham Medical School and practised as a junior hospital doctor for three years. While still a medical student, he joined the Royal Air Force and received extensive flying training, with the intention of specialising in aviation medicine. Instead, after replying to an advertisement placed in the British Medical Journal, Mercurio detoured into writing the controversial, ground-breaking BBC medical drama Cardiac Arrest (under the pseudonym John MacUre). The show was a gritty and blackly comic expose of hospital life. Mercurio went from never having written a script to creating a primetime hit.

Next he created and scripted the 6-hour miniseries Invasion: Earth, a coproduction between the BBC and the US Sci-Fi Channel, followed by The Grimleys. The Grimleys was a rites-of-passage comedy set in the Midlands in the 1970s; starring Brian Conley, Amanda Holden and Noddy Holder, it ran for three series on ITV. As well as creating and writing the Grimleys, Mercurio directed seven episodes.

Mercurio returned to dark medical fiction with his first novel, Bodies, published by Jonathan Cape (2002). He adapted the novel for TV, winning the Royal Television Society Award for Best Drama Series of 2005. Bodies dealt unflinchingly with issues of negligence, cover-ups and whistleblowing. In December 2009 the Times ranked Bodies #9 TV Show of the Decade and in January 2010 it was ranked #20 Best TV Drama of All Time by the Guardian.

After writing a children's book, The Penguin Expedition, Mercurio's second novel, Ascent, was published by Jonathan Cape (UK) and Simon and Schuster (US) in 2007 and made the Guardian's list of "1000 Novels Everyone Must Read". Ascent tells the story of a fictional Soviet fighter pilot, later cosmonaut, set against the background of the Korean War and the Space Race. A graphic novelization of Ascent, illustrated by Wesley Robins, was published in 2011.

Mercurio wrote and directed a modern-day television film of Frankenstein, starring James Purefoy, Helen McCrory and Lindsay Duncan, and then adapted Chris Ryan's "Strike Back" into a successful series for Sky. His most recent television production, "Line of Duty", a police corruption drama series, was broadcast in 2012 to critical acclaim; the programme achieved the highest ratings for a BBC2 drama in ten years, and has been commissioned for a second series to be filmed in 2013.

Jed Mercurio's most recent novel for Cape and Simon & Schuster was American Adulterer, a fictionalization of President John F. Kennedy's personal life, published in Spring 2009.




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Review

"Remarkable new novel about the president... The man's wit, courtesy, peacemaking vision and cool judgement are all here, vividly re-created, as well as courage in the face of near disabling infirmity and pain... gripping and thoughtful."-- Hugo Barnacle, "The Sunday Times""American Adulterer is a novel of our times: shameless and prurient, detached and salacious."-- Sean O'Hagan, "The Observer""Compelling... With its glacially elegant prose, Mercurio's narrative keeps its distance from the subject."-- Adrian Turpin, "Financial Times" --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

`American Adulterer is a novel of our times: shameless and prurient, detached and salacious.' --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Jill Meyer TOP 500 REVIEWER on 13 Mar. 2010
Format: Hardcover
Mercurio's "analytic" study of the physical side - both medical and erotic - of John Kennedy's life is quite interesting. It's "fiction", but with a healthy dose of actual facts about Kennedy, his marriage, and his Presidency. Mercurio writes with a "removed" voice; he's presenting his story of Kennedy as he would a scientific study of a man - conflicted in so many ways - as a "subject" of a report.

John Kennedy was a man with almost ingrained carnal urges, that were not satisfied within the bounds of marriage. Early in his life, he recognised that he would always have sexual needs. He married Jacqueline Bouvier - herself the daughter of a charming philanderer - who seemed to be the only woman he was interested in maintaining an out-of-bed relationship with. He expected her to go along with his blatant bedding of other women and she appeared to do so, occasionally even seeming to abet the deeds by giving him the room and time he needed to make conquests. Of course, that quid-pro-quo didn't come cheaply as her often insane spending on furniture, clothes, jewelry and other personal items suggest a passive/aggressive relationship with her husband.

Kennedy also had many physical frailties, some evident from childhood and others obtained during difficult war-time service in the Pacific. He had a staff of doctors at the White House, who were often at odds with each other over the on-going treatment of his Addison's Disease, back injuries, and other ailments, which often kept him in physical agony. And, then, there was of course, "Dr Feelgood", given the nickname by those patients - including Kennedy and his wife - to whom he gave injections of feel-good narcotics to keep going.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Dexter on 31 Oct. 2012
Format: Paperback
American Adulterer by Jed Mercurio ,is a novel(pardon the pun)approach to historical fiction. It takes a well known figure,John Kennedy,and treats him as a medical subject. We are then given a guided tour of his medical history from his election to his death. We are also provided with insight into his mind, particularly why he felt the need to have sex outside his marriage.

The picture we get is not a pleasant one. You get the feeling that Kennedy did not have a high regard for women. He reminds me of Dan Draper from Mad Men,women as disposable entities apart from his wife. The section with regard to his use of Fiddle, Fiddle and Fuddle make you cringe.His sexual needs seemed to matter more than any feelings towards these women. The role of President, gave Kennedy rich opportunities to satisfy his sexual thirst, which was considerable. The only woman that he had any genuine feelings for was Jackie,his wife and mother of his children.

The writer also describes Kennedy's relationships with Frank Sinatra, Marilyn Monroe,Mary Meyer and Curtis Le May. Future President Bill Clinton even makes an appearance!

We are reminded that Kennedy was also under constant medical treatment from his team of doctors. He was beset by an array of ailments from Addison's Disease,constipation, allergies and his back. The amount of drugs that he was ingesting was staggering. Would he have survived as President if the public knew his real medical history? Clearly, he was a very sick man.

Having said that, the writer does stress the humanity of the man. I defy you not to be moved by chapter that deals with the death of his son, Patrick. Very moving.

If I have one criticism,it is that Robert Kennedy is not mentioned at all.
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Format: Paperback
A very interesting perspective on the Kennedy years. Mercurio's novel takes the form of a doctor's report of a subject and all his illnesses, including his out of control sex drive. It's by no means dry, slipping deftly into novel form to make the 'report' come to life. So not only do we have a fascinating catalogue of JFK's illnesses and afflictions and the impact they have on his daily life but also details of his tumultuous love life. There is a very interesting chapter on the Cuban Missile Crisis that is high intensity turned farce as Kennedy is trying to prevent the onset of World War Three and desperate for a quickie with a young intern.

The book is well worth a read as it exposes Kennedy for the man he was - a very complex and outrageous individual.

Incidentally, Kennedy's affair with Mary Meyer is dealt with but it is never revealed that she was a great friend of Timothy Leary, the LSD guru of the 60's. Nor is any mention made of her strange murder just a few months after his assassination.
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By Jane Grey on 21 Nov. 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
American Adulterer is a terrific insight into the world of JFK - once you can get past the fact/fiction mix. Mercurio tells the story from the point of view of 'the subject' the subject being JFK and clearly uses a certain amount of fiction to wind around the facts he delivers thereby producing an absorbing read with proper turn-the-page quality that we have come to expect from this writer. An ambitious book that delivers on all levels - you really won't be disappointed.
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