The fiftieth anniversary of John F. Kennedy's assassination is coming up on November 22 and we have plenty of books you readers might want to check out. Of course, where Kennedy's death is concerned, conspiracy theories usually follow. The assassination of our 35th president in Dallas Texas is filled with fascinating characters, questions and unsolvable mysteries. Take the Umbrella Man for instance. Under clear skies the Umbrella Man opens up his black umbrella at precisely the moment Kennedy is shot! Or, Dan Rather's many errors in his reporting of the Zapruder film, the best known film taken of the event (his head goes violently backward, not forward and the secret service man was not on Kennedy's car). Then the alleged lone assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald, says he was "just a patsy," begs to have legal representation and then is shot on live television by Jack Ruby. Anyway you look at it, it is a fascinating tale that has reached almost mythical proportions, so no wonder there are so many theories out there. I've read a lot about Oswald and can't decide whether he was working for Russia, the CIA/FBI, Cuba. Was he right-wing or left-wing? It's rather hard to tell. But I would like to say something to Conspiracy Theorists; if your obsession with conspiracies is affecting your social, family or romantic life then you should probably turn off Youtube and put down Orwell. Come in and buy some lighter reading materials.
We currently have an Easton Press edition of President Kennedy by Richard Reeves.
Kennedy actually published two books before he became president. Why England Slept was actually his thesis at Harvard. It critiques England in the years leading up to WWII and was published in 1940.
Profiles in Courage was written by then Senator Kennedy while he was recovering from a surgery. It is a series of short biographies describing acts of courage by U.S. senators. We have both of Kennedy's books in stock right now.
While Kennedy is often over-glorified in this day and age, he was far from perfect. His record on Civil Rights is questionable and I was personally shocked to learn that it was under his administration (signed off by his brother Robert) that the FBI started wiretapping Martin Luther King. He should be credited for actively pursuing a peaceful foreign strategy. He was actually being pressured to preemptively strike Russia with Nuclear weapons from the moment he took office. He also never intended war in Vietnam and was in the process of withdrawing the already limited number of US troops. Of course, this was immediately reversed by Johnson when he took over the presidency. Some conspiracy theorists say it was the Military-Industrial Complex that had him killed. Strategy of Peace compiles Kennedy's foreign policy speeches and statements regarding peace, defense and security.
On the Trail of the Assassins is by Jim Garrison, the New Orleans lawyer who took Clay Shaw to court for the conspiracy to murder Kennedy, telling his story from the first person point of view. Garrison was portrayed by Kevin Costner in Oliver Stones JFK.
A Farewell to Justice reexamines Garrison's struggles from another perspective.
Rush to Judgment and Plausible Denial are both books by Mark Lane. Lane was also a lawyer and criticized the Warren Commission's Report in Judgement and implicated the CIA in Denial. CIA agent E. Howard Hunt did give a deathbed confession admitting being involved with the plot and implicated LBJ as the leader. But could this be disinformation?
Hit List by Richard Belzer and David Wayne investigates the many violent and mysterious deaths in the aftermath of the assassination.
11/22/63 by Stephen King and Libra by Don Delillo are probably the two most respected fictional books centering around the event.
And for those of you who dislike conspiracy theories and enjoy their debunking, Voodoo Histories by David Aaronovitch may be the book for you.
We have many other books concerning Kennedy and his assassination, implicating groups as far flung as the French connection, American mafia, and one directly accusing LBJ of masterminding the whole event. We also have many books just on Kennedy himself, his life and his legacy. In honor of this important day in national history, come check them all out!