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Robert Dallek's masterful John F. Kennedy: An Unfinished Life was a number one national bestseller, and it remains the most widely read one-volume biography of the 35th President. Now, in this marvelous short biography of John F. Kennedy, Dallek achieves a miracle of compression, capturing in a small space the essence of his rewned full-length masterpiece. Here readers will find the fascinating insights and groundbreaking revelations found in An Unfinished Life. The heart of the book focuses on Kennedy's political career, especially the presidency. The book sheds light on key foreign affairs issues such as the Bay of Pigs debacle, Khrushchev's misguided bullying of Kennedy in Vienna, the Cuban Missile crisis, the nuclear test ban, the race for space, and the initial dealings with Southeast Asia, especially Laos. It also highlights the difficulties Kennedy faced getting a domestic agenda passed, from a tax cut to spur the ecomy, to federal aid to education, Medicare, and civil rights. Dallek reveals the thinking behind Robert Kennedy's appointment as Attorney General and convincingly argues that Kennedy would never have expanded the war in Vietnam the way that Lyndon Johnson did. The book also addresses questions about Kennedy's assassination and concludes with his presidential legacy and why he remains so popular despite serving only a thousand days in office.
Robert Dallek is the author of ten books, including his two-volume biography of Lyndon Johnson, Lone Star Rising and Flawed Giant (both OUP), and Nixon and Kissinger. His writing has also appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Boston Globe, Wall Street Journal, Vanity Fair, and other publications.