By Larry Tye
NAMED the best BOOKS OF THE yr BY THE WASHINGTON POST
historical past recollects Robert F. Kennedy as a racial healer, a tribune for the negative, and the final revolutionary knight of a bygone period of yank politics. yet Kennedy’s enshrinement within the liberal pantheon used to be really the ultimate level of a trip that had its beginnings within the conservative Fifties. In Bobby Kennedy, Larry Tye peels away layers of fable and false impression to color a whole portrait of this singularly attention-grabbing figure.
To catch the total arc of his subject’s lifestyles, Tye attracts on unpublished memoirs, unreleased executive records, and fifty-eight bins of papers that were lower than lock and key for the prior 40 years. He performed hundreds and hundreds of interviews with RFK intimates—including Bobby’s widow, Ethel, his sister Jean, and his aide John Siegenthaler—many of whom have by no means spoken to a different biographer. Tye’s decision to sift in the course of the tangle of frequently contradictory evaluations implies that Bobby Kennedy will stand because the definitive one-volume biography of a guy a lot loved, yet simply as frequently misunderstood.
Bobby Kennedy’s transformation from chilly warrior to fiery liberal is a profoundly relocating own tale that still bargains a lens onto of the main chaotic and confounding many years of twentieth-century American historical past. the 1st half RFK’s profession underlines what the rustic used to be like within the period of Eisenhower, whereas his final years as a champion of the underclass replicate the seismic shifts wrought by means of the Nineteen Sixties. Nurtured at the rightist orthodoxies of his dynasty-building father, Bobby Kennedy all started his public existence as counsel to the red-baiting senator Joseph McCarthy. He ended it with a noble crusade to unite working-class whites with terrible blacks and Latinos in an electoral coalition that appeared poised to redraw the face of presidential politics. alongside the way in which, he became up on the heart of each occasion that mattered, from the Bay of Pigs and the Cuban Missile hindrance to race riots and Vietnam.
Bare-knuckle operative, cynical White apartment insider, romantic visionary—Bobby Kennedy was once all of these items at one time or one other, and every of those points of his character emerges within the pages of this robust and perceptive new biography.
Praise for Bobby Kennedy
“We are in Larry Tye’s debt for bringing again to lifestyles the younger presidential candidate who . . . for a short second, virtually part a century in the past, instilled wish for the longer term in indignant, apprehensive Americans.”—David Nasaw, The manhattan occasions booklet Review
“Sweeping . . . [Tye] captures RFK’s upward thrust and fall with easy prose strengthened through notable examine. besides 1000s of interviews with Kennedy intimates, together with his widow, Ethel, Tye sifted via unpublished memoirs, unreleased executive records, and bins of Kennedy papers that were locked away for a few 40 years.”—USA Today
“Tye (“Superman”) exhibits how RFK used to be no longer regularly the innovative hero yet a piece in progress—after all, Kennedy labored for Joseph McCarthy for a spell. Tye’s pages at the assassination are heart-wrenching.”—New York Post
“This biography will charm not just to these short of a portrait of a dynamic idealist, but additionally to these looking to comprehend the feelings of the days within which he lived.”—Henry A. Kissinger
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Bobby Kennedy: The Making of a Liberal Icon by Larry Tye