Saturday, December 29, 2012

Killing Kennedy - The End of Camelot

Hello.  My name is Sharon.  I am a published author of nonfiction and a wannabee author of published fiction.  I am currently writing in the romance genre.  Now I see some of you turning up your noses at that.  But think of it this way - there's nothing wrong with a bit of love.  The world would be a much better place if we all made love not war.

Okay.  I just dated me in the span of time.  Yep, I'm an aging Hippie.  There's not a thing wrong with that.  My aging hands are still perfectly capable of making a respectable peace sign - among other gestures when appropriate.

This blog will be devoted to pop culture - films, tv, music, and books (e or otherwise.)

My first post is devoted to the book Killing Kennedy - The End of Camelot written by Bill O'Reilly and Martin Dugard.

This book is the number one best selling nonfiction title on the New York Times Bestseller List and has been for a few months.

I lived in the Dallas area on November 22, 1963.  I was in what we knew as junior high school - which many of you will know as middle school. The events of that day are still fresh in my consciousness and they still hurt.  It is a terrible feeling when the President is assassinated in your home town.  I hope none of you ever experience such trauma.

Mr. O'Reilly and Mr. Dugard have produced a well written book that reads like a novel instead of a true crime story or dry historical tome.  The characters of JFK, his wife Jackie, his brother Bobby, and his assassin Lee Harvey Oswald, all come alive as never before.  Honestly, I'm not sure about Oswald and his role in the assassination, but that's a mystery that may never be solved.

It was an enjoyable read which had my attention throughout.  They brought that time period back in vivid detail.  I could almost smell the cigarette smoke in that parking garage where Ruby shot Oswald.  I could see the gurney taking the President's body through the lower halls of Parkland Hospital.

The authors captured the time correctly.  It was a time of such hope for the future.  We had a vital young leader who had brought us back from the brink of nuclear war.  There were small children in the White House.  Their parents were icons of style and grace.  The Kennedys appeared to be the perfect family to lead us into an enlightened future.

The dream was obliterated on a bright November day in Dallas, like Camelot, never to come again.

Bravo Mr. O'Reilly and Mr. Dugard on a job well done.


  1. Sharon, what a great first post. Well done, from the perspective of a young girl's first experience with a tragedy that affected the world. One month after the Columbine shootings, a high school in my town, only a few miles from me, also had a shooting. It's a terrible thing to see your own town on national news for such a horrible thing. I can only imagine how awful it was for you then.

    Looking forward to more good stuff from you, one of my favorite gals!

  2. Great blog, Sharon! I want to read Killing Kennedy, and now, I want to read it even more. I read O'Reilly's Killing Lincoln and loved it. I will return here often to read you future blogs.

  3. Hey Sharon - great blog. You've definitely interested me in reading this book. I remember poignantly where I was when the news came. I was sitting in my trig class when the principal came over the intercom to announce the tragic killing of this man who had so much hope and promise riding on him. School was dismissed and we were told to proceed to our buses. Out in the hallway, usually a cacophony of voices, the thumping books being tossed into lockers and clanging locker doors shutting as students celebrated the end of another day. But on that day the halls were eerily quiet. Only a few whispered words here and there, no tossed books, no slammed doors. We were in shock. I look forward to reading the book.

  4. Thank you all for your comments.

    Skye, it is a wonderful book which will really take you back in time. I'm reading his book Killing Lincoln now. It is also very good and written more like a novel.

    Yep, I was in my English class when the principal broadcast the tv sound from his office over the intercom. I heard Walter Cronkite announce the president was dead. I don't think I'll ever forget that moment. As you said, the school was quiet. There was no fighting, laughing, nothing except for the soft crying of some of the students.

  5. Good blog beginning & congrats to you on that, Sharon. I'll probably not read the book, but the memories rise. I'd just come back from lunch on my first job out of high school and heard the report on the radio. A co-worker got the word and announced it to the rest of us sitting in a busy open room. All motion stopped and quiet took over. The following days were filled with news and photos and clips and videos. I saw the Ruby-Oswald killing live on TV. A year later I visted JFK's eternal flame grave in Arlington. Members of his family visited earlier in the day. Somber, again. Then, years later we moved to Dallas, and as a daily matter of (odd) course on working days, we drove by the book depository and the hill on the very road where he was shot and zoomed to the hospital. It looked like any other road, reduced to its utility, except it certainly wasn't. Those Dallas lanes were haunts of sad, mysterious, unforgettable, revealing U.S. history. Awful, indeed.

  6. Odd that you should mention the eternal flame. I also went to see it just a year or two after it was lit and as I stood at the foot of that rise to the Curtis-Lee mansion, I remembered rolling down that hill as a child giggling all the way, and realized there would never be any giggling in that place again.

  7. I worked in downtown Dallas for a couple of years and took the motorcade route home every day, right by the Schoolbook Depository and the grassy knoll. No matter how much was on my mind as I drove, I never failed to realize where I was and what had happened on that spot. I also had to take clients to Parkland Hospital occasionally. They have a memorial to JFK on the lower level through which the gurneys are brought in from the ambulances...

    I once read a quote from somebody that said something like the banality of evil is its greatest looks so normal.