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The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys/an American Saga [Hardcover]

Doris Kearns Goodwin
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Jan 1987
"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 powerful family in America. Drawing on unprecedented access to the family and its private papers, Pulitzer Prize-winning and bestselling historian Doris Kearns Goodwin takes readers from John Francis "Honey Fitz" Fitzgerald's baptism in 1863 through his reign as mayor of Boston, to the inauguration of his grandson as president ninety-eight years later. Each character emerges unforgettably: 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.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster (Jan 1987)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0671231081
  • ISBN-13: 978-0671231088
  • Product Dimensions: 23.6 x 15.8 x 5.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 776,910 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Doris Kearns Goodwin is the doyenne of US presidential historians, and one of the most acclaimed non-fiction authors in the world. She won the Pulitzer Prize for History in 1995.

Product Description


"The New York Times" Rarely has this familiar saga seemed so fresh and dramatic. Rarely have its characters been so alive and individual. Rarely has popular history rung so authentic. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent reprint of this first class work 20 Mar 2011
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This hard copy reprint of the original work is beautifully presented with additional references. A must for those with a serious interest in the Kennedy family
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Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I loved the stories and content of the book but find Doris Kearns Goodwin's way of writing tedious and overly complicated. It is also very repetitive in places but for anyone interested in the Fitzgerald/Kennedy families it is a very good read.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Great book!!! 25 Feb 2013
By J. Ball
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is truly a page turner - which is quite unexpected from a biography and a real insight into what made the start of the Kennedy era tick. A must read for history
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars nice soft ball approach 14 Sep 2011
By rob crawford TOP 1000 REVIEWER
OK, so much negative stuff has been written about the Kennedys that this somehwat romanticized perspective could be viewed as a welcome balance. Though it smacks of Horatio Alger at times, it is indeed interesting and fun and stimulates interest to dig deeper. THe best parts of this book are the history of the US.

Unfortunately, when you do dig deeper than she did, what you find is not very pretty: a genius in business, Joe Kennedy was a tough SOB who would fleece anyone to get richer. Even Kearns has to mention, for example, that he ripped off investors when he got out of Hollywood - ruining many poor people who believed in him - and that his father, a local banker and businessman, burned his account books when he died so that his son would not pursue small debtors he wanted to help out. The Kennedy kids were thrust into power as instruments of his ambition, and it cost many of them their lives, as we know. There was a lot of good in them, but they were bred to become powerful, and what they represented in politics had less to do with conviction than as a means of ascent.

I learned a great deal from this book, so recommend it. But it is also sentimental and ignores too much evidence that contradicts her fawning vision of this elite family of voracious appetites. I suspect the Kennedys recognized Kearns' predilection for nice people and charmed her into willing submission. Afterall, they are true pols, so they used her.
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0 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well written and insightful. 28 July 1999
By A Customer
The legend of Camelot flourishes... Crescit eundo.
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