Being a former Secret Service agent during JFK’s presidency gives Blaine the first-hand knowledge to accurately recount life with President Kennedy, his wife Jacqueline, and their two children Caroline and John Jr.
In bold, blue letters, The Kennedy Detail boasts “JFK’s Secret Service Agents Break Their Silence” on its cover. With such a daring exclamation, it would seem that The Kennedy Detail is an all-access account of the personal life of the famed U.S. president. Instead, Blaine’s expertise, combined with Secret Service papers and other agents’ accounts, help paint a picture of the days leading up to Kennedy’s assassination on November 22, 1963.
Although Blaine wrote the book with McCubbin, the reader would never know. The Kennedy Detail is written in third-person, which surprisingly seems to put the reader right in the midst of the action. I almost felt like I was reliving the events with Blaine and the Kennedy Detail.
I appreciated that the book was divided into four simplistic parts: “The Men”,” The Job”, “That Day”, and “Our Lives”. Fortunately, the book explains Secret Service jargon and the back story to Kennedy’s assassination, so that even someone who isn’t familiar with Secret Service or American history would still be able to understand.
As I was reading, I couldn’t help but feel this sense of dread leading to the assassination. The tone is so positive and encouraging that you can’t help but feel the same positivity while reading through The Kennedy Detail.
When the assassination occurs in “That Day”, the chapters explain what happened behind the famous newscasts and iconic photographs. It gives an inside scoop about the events at Parkland Hospital, where Kennedy eventually died, giving more information than Walter Cronkite ever could.
Not only does the The Kennedy Detail give behind-the-scenes information, but it also features pictures from the Secret Service and Blaine’s personal collection. The photos add an additional touch in order to “put names to faces” of the many Secret Service agents mentioned in the book.
If you want to learn more about The Kennedy Detail, check out its website at www.kennedydetail.com.