15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
An everyday story of Kennedy folk...,
This review is from: The Importance of Being Kennedy (Paperback)
I didn't want this book to end. My first foray into the works of Laurie Graham (but assuredly not my last...) was a delight from start to finish - and I confess I eked out the last few pages so as to make the enjoyment last. I suppose one might describe this unusual book as a 'non-fiction novel'.
I was nineteen years old when my hero JFK was murdered and I guess it was on the cards that this story of his and his eight siblings' Boston childhood and young adulthood would grab me from page one. Nora Brennan, a young Irish immigrant to America is employed as nursemaid when millionaire bootlegger and Hollywood entrepreneur Joseph Kennedy and his young wife Rose produce the first of their brood, and she stays with the ever-increasing family for many years.
The book is told from Nora's point of view and Ms Graham captures beautifully Nora's special Irish outlook on life, her sense of humour and her wonderful turn of phrase. Nora's opinions on Mrs Kennedy alone are worth the price of admission.....
As someone who has read her fair share of books about the Kennedy family, I take my hat off to Ms Graham's meticulous research. Interestingly, the book does not dwell too much on Jack, which would, perhaps have been the obvious road to take. No, it focuses largely on Kathleen the second daughter, known to her family as 'Kick' - and on her elder sister, Rosemary. The stories of these two girls would, I think, bring a tear to the driest eye.
As I said, I really didn't want the book to end, and the ending, when it came, was poignant and bitter-sweet and the final sentence stayed with me for days.