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The Kennedy Half-Century: The Presidency, Assassination, and Lasting Legacy of John F. Kennedy [Kindle Edition]

Larry J. Sabato
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Product Description


The Kennedy Half Century is a Master Class in discovering and evaluating John F. Kennedy as a man,a President and a game-changing figure in American life. The cultural change Kennedy brought to the nation is the real and original contribution Larry J. Sabato brings to the never-ending debates about the 35th President. (Richard Reeves, author of PORTRAIT OF CAMELOT: A Thousand Days in the Kennedy White House)

In The Kennedy Half-Century, Larry Sabato not only sheds new light on the assassination, but, and more importantly, masterfully explains the enduring legacy of Kennedy and his 1000 days in office. (John Grisham)

Larry Sabato has compiled a mountain of research that is sure to be the go-to reference on the assassination for years to come. He seems to have examined any and everything connected to Kennedy's death and brought new insight and understanding to that awful weekend when America lost its innocence. (Bob Schieffer, CBS News)

If you think you know everything about the Kennedy assassination, you haven't read Larry Sabato's book. I urge you to do so! (Julian Bond)

The Kennedy Half-Century is full of new insights and revelations about a President whose tragic death left so many wondering, "What if?" This is a fascinating examination of the policies he put in place and how they influenced the nine Presidents who followed him into the oval office. (Katie Couric)

...a timely, well-documented, and measured view of our 35th president. (Publishers Weekly)

The legend of a charismatic young leader cut down in his prime complicates the task of even-handedly assessing Kennedy's legacy [but] Larry Sabato's book does a good job of accomplishing this task . . . Sabato's research is very well documented (Marjorie Randon Hershey, Indiana University, Bloomington, US Indiana Magazine of History 2014-09-30)

Book Description

An original and illuminating narrative revealing John F. Kennedy's lasting influence on America, by the acclaimed political analyst Larry J. Sabato.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 9901 KB
  • Print Length: 624 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury USA; 1 edition (15 Oct. 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00CIR97SY
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #211,211 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An engrossing, respectful, poignant read... 7 July 2014
It has been more than fifty years now since that tragic day in Dallas in 1963, and yet the public fascination with JFK shows no sign of abating. Despite a presidency of just over a thousand days he is consistently ranked up with the greatest of American presidents; books, articles, documents, films, video games continue to pour out every year; and few policy initiatives or presidential campaigns have been complete without some kind of Kennedy endorsement.

In this truly engrossing book, Larry Sabato sets out to explore that Kennedy legacy, looking first at his campaign for the presidency, his brief tenure in the White House and his assassination in Dallas on 22nd November 1963. He then explores the conspiracy theories surrounding Kennedy's death and the various investigations, primarily the Warren Commission and the House Select Committee on Assassinations.

The second half of this book is devoted to the post-Kennedy presidents and how they variously tackled the ghost in the White House, with both Democrats and Republicans consciously positioning themselves as Kennedy's successors, invoking his actions, speeches and legislation as precedents and justification for their own actions. From LBJ who consciously set out to carry out Kennedy's legacy, Bill Clinton who hero-worshipped him, and Obama, whose campaign echoed some of the rhetoric of hope and vigour that was so redolent of the New Frontier, JFK has been consistently cited and evoked far more than any other President, more than Washington, Lincoln and Jefferson.

Assassination, Sabato concludes, made JFK untouchable - and that lack of any definitive answer to the question of 'why?' has only strengthened the legend.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Trilogy of Murder 20 Feb. 2014
It is no coincidence the top political murders of the twentieth century involved left wing liberals: 1) the American president John Kennedy, 2) Italian prime minister Aldo Moro, and 3) the 33-day Pope who taunted right wing curial cardinals: "We have made of sex the greatest of sins, whereas it is nothing more than human nature and not a sin at all."

This book does a relatively good job of getting to the bottom of the 1963 Kennedy murder. The Vatican Murders: The Life and Death of John Paul I takes care of the other two. It proves the hypothesis of Avro Manhattan of South Shield England: The conspiracy that planned the Great Vatican Bank Scandal was the same conspiracy that plotted the murder of Aldo Moro and John Paul I in 1978.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By markr TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This is an excellent book which covers the main points of JFKs presidency, the assassination and the many theories about who may have been responsible, before looking at the influence of the Kennedy legacy on every subsequent president.

We learn which presidents quoted JFK most frequently, and who amongst them used his speeches to promote thier own agendas, and who did not.

Well written, engaging and thoughful, this is a superbly researched and very interesting addition to the many books about the life and presidency of one of the United States' most charismatic and influencial leaders.

Highly recommended
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars seriously fascinating 31 Oct. 2013
I am reading this in conjunction with Professor Sabato's online course. What impresses me most is that the book is in conversational style - an intense, high-level and extremely informed style, certainly, but not at all dry and it could not possibly be uninteresting.
There is demonstrably a staggering amount of research behind this book; the acknowledgements page and the bibliography make that extremely clear - but it is applied in such a way as to clarify the subject rather than simply paraded for its own sake.
On the subject of JFK's adulteries, it's not at all as prurient as it could easily be - although I'm still not sure that the other party in a brief encounter could be described as a "mistress" rather than "just another quickie" - and the details about the assassination evidence that was destroyed/lost/not followed up are genuinely horrifying.
We are probably never going to come close to the truth about the awful day in Dallas; but this book gives an extremely powerful and well-written analysis of what was going on then and what is still happening.
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