Reviews for Day Kennedy Died : 50 Years Later: Life Remembers the Man and the Moment

Library Journal Reviews 2013 September #2

JFK was a perfect fit for LIFE magazine, possessing both the glamour for its alluring photographs of charismatic celebrities and the standing for its serious photojournalism. Upon Kennedy's assassination, it was LIFE that purchased the Abraham Zapruder film and published portions of it. Now, each Zapruder frame will be published in a special gatefold section of this oversized volume, and there are gripping photographs throughout. The book's mostly unnamed LIFE authors write in a casual style (e.g., "We need to scoot ahead…."). They cover JFK's life in fewer than 40 pages before covering the 1963 trip to Texas. Readers follow President and Mrs. Kennedy around the state and to the tragic afternoon. The book then provides various perspectives on the assassination (e.g., "Who Was Oswald?"), with "LIFE Is on the Story" and "LIFE Stays on the Story" reminding readers just how much has changed in news gathering and journalist access. Alexandra Zapruder's piece on her grandfather's legacy is eloquent and affecting. The section titled "'Where Were You When You Heard?'" has little overlap with Where Were You?, below. Several pages then cover conspiracy theories. The work closes with follow-ups on members of the Kennedy family and a removable full reprint of the November 29, 1963, issue of LIFE magazine. VERDICT This title is for both veterans of and those new to its subject. Although the gatefold and removable facsimile may present library circulation challenges, this work should be considered essential for most JFK collections. With a foreword consisting of a conversation with David McCullough.--Margaret Heilbrun, Library Journal

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