The Kennedy Detail by Gerald Blaine

The Kennedy Detail

By Gerald Blaine

  • Release Date: 2010-11-02
  • Genre: United States
Score: 4.5
From 182 Ratings
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The New York Times bestselling and extraordinary true story of the critical events leading up to and following the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, as told by the Secret Service agents who were firsthand witnesses to one of America’s greatest tragedies.

The Secret Service. An elite team of men who share a single mission: to protect the president of the United States. On November 22, 1963, these men failed—and a country would never be the same. Now, for the first time, a member of JFK’s Secret Service detail reveals the inside story of the assassination, the weeks and days that led to it and its heartrending aftermath. This extraordinary book is a moving, intimate portrait of dedication, courage, and loss.

Drawing on the memories of his fellow agents, Jerry Blaine captures the energetic, crowd-loving young president, who banned agents from his car and often plunged into raucous crowds with little warning. He describes the careful planning that went into JFK’s Texas swing, the worries and concerns that agents, working long hours with little food or rest, had during the trip. And he describes the intensely private first lady making her first-ever political appearance with her husband, just months after losing a newborn baby.

Here are vivid scenes that could come only from inside the Kennedy detail: JFK’s last words to his tearful son when he left Washington for the last time; how a sudden change of weather led to the choice of the open-air convertible limousine that day; Mrs. Kennedy standing blood-soaked outside a Dallas hospital room; the sudden interruption of six-year-old Caroline’s long-anticipated sleepover with a friend at home; the exhausted team of agents immediately reacting to the president’s death with a shift to LBJ and other key governmental figures; the agents’ dismay at Jackie’s decision to walk openly from the White House to St. Matthew’s Cathedral at the state funeral.

Most of all, this is a look into the lives of men who devoted their entire beings to protecting the presidential family: the stress of the secrecy they kept, the emotional bonds that developed, the terrible impact on agents’ psyches and families, and their astonishment at the country’s obsession with far-fetched conspiracy theories and finger-pointing. A book fifty years in coming, The Kennedy Detail is a portrait of incredible camaraderie and incredible heartbreak—a true, must-read story of heroism in its most complex and human form.


  • The Kennedy Detail

    By Kevbobev
    Excellent! Great perspective from agents who were true insiders.
  • Review

    By zqkfg
    Great insight into the demands of the Service.
  • Excellent book

    By Gleegirl911
    Really good
  • So glad to get this peek behind the curtain!

    By Chaz the bounty hunter
    Though I President Kennedy was assassinated nearly 2 decades before I was born I have always been fascinated by the President. The Kennedy Detail provides a rare peek into his presidency from the men who were closer to him--literally--than any other so-called expert. I was particularly touched to learn of the President's devotion to his wife and children because for many years his devotion to his wife has been questioned. The rumors of his infidelity, like so many assassination conspiracies, are utterly false. Thanks for restoring Jack Kennedy as a man worthy of our highest respect--at least for this American
  • Don't Bother

    By BrianL99
    The Title of this book should have been, "Clint Hill, How Cool Am I" or "A Secret Service Agent's Unrequited Love Story With Jackie O." As for Gerry Blaine, he wasn't even there when JFK was assassinated. The book is a complete whitewash of the Kennedy White House and they couldn't even manage to spell Hyannisport correctly. The book is strictly Amateur Hour pablum, written by a couple of old, bored men, with little or nothing to say.
  • Excellent

    By Vvvvgggg
    As a 10 year old I remember where I was that day just like anyone of any age remembers. This book is a first hand account of what REALLY happened - from the men who were right there. I applaud these brave men for their courage and I feel for them in their pain. Thank you for telling this story. Future generations must be taught how one man's murder changed the world forever.
  • The Kennedy Detail

    By iThinkiThought
    Very informative read. Great insights into the mind of true sentinels. Finally puts to rest for me all the conspiracy theories and theorists of the Kennedy assassination. Lays bare one agent's guilt and tortured soul whom ironically preformed his duty the best during the assassination. One will clearly understand how President Kennedy's life was vulnerable to assassination in the end. An end that ultimately changed our world. A must read for the historian, the conspirator theorist, all Secret Service agents or the just plain Kennedyphile...
  • Spectacular

    By cparth
    Finally the real story narrated by who was really there. I couldn't stop reading. This Is the real thing, no Oliver Stone fiction
  • A Must Read

    By Garlicbeth
    This book was long overdue but certainly could not have been written while any of the principles were alive. Protecting the President and his family, other government and world leaders, and the candidates for the highest public office is arduous and this book depicts the life of secret service agents and their families with all of the realities included. Secret service agents lead lives that in many ways resembles that of our dedicated soldiers. Learning about the realities of protecting our leaders was an eye opener. A second aspect of this book is to set the record straight about the conspiracy theories that surrounded JFK's assassination. There are many and in that vein, this book is about 43 years too late. It made me remember Mark Twain's saying, "A lie travels half way around the world while the truth is still putting on it's shoes." JFK is quoted in this book as saying: "The great enemy of the truth is not the lie, deliberate, contrived and dishonest, but the myth, persistent, persuasive and unrealistic." Not much has changed in that regard in today's world as we have witnessed the impact of lies on political campaigns, stories involving health care legislation, the President's origin of birth and conspiracy theories about 911. This book, in it's telling, puts to rest conspiracy theories about JFK's death and hopefully will cause the movement of those books in libraries and bookstores to the fiction sections of those shelves.
  • Great Read

    By JoeD523
    After all these years, finally the stories from those who were there.