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10 Books Written About JFK

Learn all about the 35th president of the United States.

Leader, inspiration, visionary. Are some of the words often used to describe the late 35th president of the United States, John Fitzgerald Kennedy, whose record of public service was cut short unexpectedly on 1964 by his untimely assassination which left a nation forever wondering what could have he accomplished otherwise.

Being famous not only for the monumental crises he fought during his short tenure, but equally because of the sensationally controversial and outrageous private life he had, much of it not known during his lifetime. This has made him a complex, layered character with individual aspects being worthy of several books, and that’s why there are already so many about him.

Learn what drove this man, and how today’s people are equally charmed by him as they were back in the day. Find out what made JFK such a compelling and alluring character by reading these books that analyze in depth his political and personal lives.

#1 Dallas ’63 by Peter Dale Scott

Dallas '63 by Peter Dale Scott Get this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

For Peter Dale Scott, the American government is a complex web of corruption, where the most powerful players are rarely held accountable for their actions. He’s dubbed this entity as “the deep state”—and there’s no better example of their manipulations than JFK’s assassination. Drawing from his investigations into the American tragedies and intelligence agencies, Scott purports that members of this “deep state” were the puppeteers behind the events of November 23, 1963. The CIA and FBI may not have pulled the trigger, but according to Scott, they are no less culpable in Kennedy’s death.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#2 Not in Your Lifetime by Anthony Summers

Not in Your Lifetime by Anthony SummersGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

After years of waiting, classified documents into Kennedy’s assassination were finally released this year. But why were they kept a secret in the first place? Who were they protecting, and why are the American people still without definitive answers? These questions are the crux of Summer’s acclaimed book, which provides a balanced analysis of the events surrounding JFK’s assassination. Given Trump’s hesitancy about sharing the remaining unreleased files, Not in Your Lifetime feels especially relevant.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#3 Case Closed: Lee Harvey Oswald and the Assassination of JFK by Gerald Posner

Case Closed: Lee Harvey Oswald and the Assassination of JFK by Gerald PosnerGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

In his New York Times-bestseller and Pulitzer Prize finalist, Gerald Posner tries to find the truth, parsing fact from conspiracy to discover the real story behind what we think we know. He tackles the most commonly debated theories surrounding the assassination—from the government’s collusion with the mafia to the presence of a second shooter—in an attempt to lay the doubts to rest, once and for all.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#4 Assignment: Oswald by James P. Hosty Jr.

Assignment: Oswald by James P. Hosty Jr. Get this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

Prior to Kennedy’s death, the FBI suspected Lee Harvey Oswald of Soviet espionage. Agent James P. Hosty was at this center of the pre-assassination investigation—though he had no idea that he, too, would soon become the subject of nationwide conjecture. The turning point came when it was discovered that Hosty did not turn over a valuable piece of evidence to the Warren Commission: Just one year before, Oswald had written Hosty a letter, warning him to stop contacting Oswald’s Russian wife. But after years of figuring greatly in various conspiracy theories, Hosty finally sets the record straight with this must-read memoir—offering his take on that fateful day, his interactions with Oswald and his wife, Hoover’s FBI, and the government’s desperate actions following the assassination

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#5 CIA Rogues and the Killing of the Kennedys by Patrick Nolan

CIA Rogues and the Killing of the Kennedys by Patrick NolanGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

Speaking of conspiracy theories: If that’s your jam, fall further down the rabbit hole with Patrick Nolan’s CIA Rogues and the Killing of the Kennedys. While the assassinations of John and his brother, Robert, occurred five years apart, Nolan contends they’re both connected through their culprits: the CIA. Nolan supports his argument by mining the agency’s long-running history of corruption—from the murders of world leaders to the misdeeds of director Richard Helms—in addition debunking “myths” surrounding Lee Harvey Oswald. Whether you agree with Nolan’s views or not, his beliefs certainly make for a gripping and provocative read.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#6 John F. Kennedy and PT-109 by Richard Tregaskis

John F. Kennedy and PT-109 by Richard TregaskisGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

Taking a step back from his death, the author of Guadalcanal Diary focuses on one of Kennedy’s greatest acts of heroism. While patrolling the Blackett Strait in 1943, Kennedy’s Navy motor torpedo boat was attacked by a Japanese destroyer. Though PT-109 was left in pieces and its crew members left for dead, Kennedy fought tirelessly to save the lives of his men. His bravery would later earn him a Purple Heart and a Marine Corps Medal, setting him down the path towards leading the very country he fought for.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#7 Bulletins from Dallas by Bill Sanderson

Bulletins from Dallas by Bill SandersonGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

Contrary to popular belief, Walter Cronkite was not the first to relay news of the gunshots fired in Dealey Plaza. Rather, Cronkite was simply reading someone else’s work—that of White House correspondent Merriman Smith. Similarly, it was Smith who saw a bloodied Kennedy before the nurses, and it was Smith who stood onboard Air Force One with a shaken Lyndon B. Johnson. Smith’s report on these events eventually earned him a Pulitzer Prize in 1964 and the Presidential Medal of Freedom three years afterwards. But how did he manage to beat his colleagues to the headline? And is the stress of the assassination partly to blame for his tragic demise in 1970? Bill Sanderson answers these questions, and many others, in Bulletins from Dallas, drawing from interviews with Smith’s friends and family to reveal how he nabbed one of the biggest stories of the century.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#8 Johnny, We Hardly Knew Ye by Kenneth P. O’Donnel

Johnny, We Hardly Knew Ye by Kenneth P. O’DonnelGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

Kennedy was the political darling of the American people, though few could say they knew him intimately. But Kenneth P. O’Donnell and David F. Powers—Kennedy’s top political aide and special assistant, respectively—were two such confidants. Johnny We Hardly Knew Ye is a collection of their shared memories, which describe what it was like to spend time with the Kennedys during JFK’s presidency. Together, they’ve created a humanizing portrait that strips away the myth from the friend, the father, the brother, and the man.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#9 Accessories After the Fact by Sylvia Meagher

Accessories After the Fact by Sylvia MeagherGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

In the wake of Kennedy’s assassination, the Warren Commission—established by the newly instated Lyndon B. Johnson—was tasked with investigating the incident. Less than one year later, they presented their conclusions in an 888-page report that insisted Harvey Lee Oswald was not only at fault but he was the only person at fault. While most swallowed this assessment, no questions asked, there were some skeptics who doubted the Commission’s honesty (including some of its own members, according to a 1992 report). But Sylvia Meagher was one of the few who dared to speak out publicly, and her searing 1967 exposé makes several damning assertions about the culpability of Oswald, the FBI, and the Commission itself.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#10 Conversations with Kennedy by Benjamin C. Bradlee

Conversations with Kennedy by Benjamin C. BradleeGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

As a war veteran, idealist, and a rising leader during the 50s, Benjamin C. Bradlee has a lot in common with JFK. These similarities fostered a lasting bond that would begin during the 1950s, but whose reverberations would last beyond Kennedy’s death in 1963. His book, Conversations with Kennedy, explores the president’s professional and personal lives through the prism of their special friendship. Bradlee’s analysis of Kennedy’s political beliefs, strategies, and accomplishments are accompanied by more intimate anecdotes: weekend parties, private dialogues, and Kennedy’s impact on Bradlee’s own life.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Contributors to this article
Kishore Valavan from Reader’s Cafe

Written by Zak Parker

Journalist, writer, musician, professional procrastinator. I'll add more here later.

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