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The sordid and fabled history of the American Camelot comes to life in this highly stylized, faux-journalistic reconstruction of the life and wild times of Judith Campbell Exner, reputed mistress to Frank Sinatra, JFK, and mob boss Sam Giancana. Our unnamed guide is an old-school Chicago journalist who talks in a hard-bitten voice about crooked prosecutors and pot-smoking car-dealers. But these marginal characters offer him his first glimpses into Exner's strange life and all the secret deals, trysts, and high-stakes maneuvers involved. Soon, he becomes obsessed and convinced that Exner was no high-class hooker, but an innocent believer attracted to romance and the high life, though ultimately in over her head as she goes from a party girl who catches Sinatra's eye to a paramour of the president and later a somewhat-unwitting go-between between the Kennedys and the mob. Turner paints her as a dark-haired counterpart to Marilyn Monroe, a quintessentially American tragic figure who enjoyed a charmed ascent and fell out of grace thanks to her flaws. Beneath the book's gossipy veneer, Turner (Redemption) cunningly probes notions of power, glamour, and notoriety.(May)
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ISBN-10:  0151015090
ISBN-13:  978-0151015092
Author:  Frederick Turner
Genre:  Historical Fiction
Publisher:  Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
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review by . April 17, 2010
"It was like Hercules being told he had one day to clean ou the king's stable and barn when the place was so deep in s**t the smell of it permeated all of Greece. Well, somehow Herc did it, but then, that's a myth, and this is history, and she gave up trying to rewrite it."    "She" in this quote from "The Go-Between" is Judith Campbell Exner, who for the few shining months of Camelot on the Potomac was paramour to President, Family, and Rat Pack. The months were short--barely …
review by . March 25, 2010
Turner, Frederick. "The Go-Between: A Novel of the Kennedy Years", Houghton Mifflin, 2010.  Remembering Camelot    Amos Lassen    It is only recently that the legend of Camelot has come to be known not only as the time when John Kennedy was president but as a time that some very sordid things were going on. Our main character here is Judith Campbell Exner, the supposed mistress of not only JFK but of Frank Sinatra and mob leader, Sam Giancana. The …
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The Go-Between: A Novel of the Kennedy Years
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