The Immortals

The Immortals

by Michael Korda
     
 

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Jack Kennedy - the American hero. Marilyn Monroe - the love goddess. Their affair has been whispered about for thirty years. Now, at last, the story we have only been able to imagine is brought to vibrant, stunning life - a passionate, tragic romance played out against a background of deadly intrigue, power politics, and Hollywood glamour on a grand scale. Only… See more details below

Overview

Jack Kennedy - the American hero. Marilyn Monroe - the love goddess. Their affair has been whispered about for thirty years. Now, at last, the story we have only been able to imagine is brought to vibrant, stunning life - a passionate, tragic romance played out against a background of deadly intrigue, power politics, and Hollywood glamour on a grand scale. Only Michael Korda, best-selling author of Queenie and The Fortune could so convincingly portray characters already larger than life, and a story more complex, more resonantly true than any rumor or speculation. At the center of this extraordinary novel is Marilyn - not the "dumb blonde" of Hollywood legend, but a woman who explodes from the page with great strength - deeply passionate, funny, outrageous, often life-loving, but with a fatal inability to hold on to happiness even when it is within her grasp. When she meets the young Senator John F. Kennedy at a Beverly Hills party, it is, for both of them, love at first sight - the beginning of an affair that will become political dynamite in the hands of a rogues' gallery of politicians and criminals. The cast of characters is dazzling, fascinating, audaciously imagined. Jack Kennedy, charming, fatally ambitious, capable at once of great passion and cold political calculation; Bobby Kennedy, whose reputation for ruthlessness conceals a sensitive and tender nature, and who finally (and with fatal consequences) replaces his brother in Marilyn's life; J. Edgar Hoover, who uses his knowledge of the affair for his own purposes; Jimmy Hoffa, the Teamster leader, whose taping of the lovers' most intimate erotic moments sets off a chain of events that ends in Marilyn's death and Jack Kennedy's assassination; crime bosses Santo Trafficante, Carlos Marcello, and Sam Giancana, all of them in on the secret.... Michael Korda has written the story behind the myth that has become the fabric of our national imagination, holding nothing back, revealing at last the missing ele

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Once again Korda ( Queenie ; The Fortune ) glibly but engagingly dramatizes historical events: this time, the love affairs between Marilyn Monroe and Jack and Bobby Kennedy. (Anxious to establish his assiduous research, he expresses his indebtedness to 17 books about the Kennedys, Monroe, J. Edgar Hoover, Jimmy Hoffa and others.) A fictional public relations expert, David Lehman, narrates much of the tale. Fast-moving, with lively if superficial and overly familiar characters, the plot portentously rehashes Monroe's various marriages and innumerable affairs, career swings and problems with drugs and alcohol. Korda also chronicles the Kennedy brothers' rise to power, their father's heavy hand in shaping their careers and their friendship with Frank Sinatra, meanwhile suggesting the machinations of the FBI, the mob and the Teamsters. (Jackie Kennedy is absent for the most part.) Except for the dialogue, which generally rings true, and the invented sex scenes, Korda adds nothing new or surprising; the book will further relegate Marilyn and Jack to pop-culture history. Though it's good commercial ``faction,'' however, even hardy readers will find the novel about 100 pages too long. 150,000 first printing; $150,000 ad/promo; first serial rights to Cosmopolitan; movie rights to Dino De Laurentiis; ok Literary Guild main selection. (Sept.)
Kirkus Reviews
Sweeping love story of Marilyn Monroe's long-standing affairs with Senator, then President, Kennedy and brother Bobby. That Marilyn and JFK might someday be worthy of the high treatment given by Wild Bill Shakespeare to Antony and Cleopatra remains a teaser for playwrights and novelists. But in his latest (already slated for filming as well as heavy marketing), Korda—Queenie, Curtain, etc.—sets his sights much lower than great tragedy and gives us a work of strong intelligence and ravishing vulgarity. Almost no event in it is unfamiliar, though its great garden of sex-play springs largely from imagination. Many readers will be dismayed by Korda's pillow talk among the gods, sex chat given a saltiness that may fit the actual MM & JFK but that looks cheap on paper. The story: MM, married to DiMaggio, meets Senator Kennedy at a Beverly Hills party; he gives her his card; they rendezvous. Marilyn is bored by her husbands and treats adultery like a midnight plum duff. She loves Jack, Jack loves MM. He has an arrangement with Jackie that his satyriasis need not be contained but must remain discreet; MM's being the most famous woman in the world, however, crimps JFK's ties with jealous Jackie, who finds out about the ongoing affair. Meanwhile, RFK attacks the Teamsters hierarchy, Dave Beck and Jimmy Hoffa, and Jimmy in turn bugs Peter Lawford's love-tryst bungalow, various hotel rooms, and MM's phone and bedroom, all of which are already bugged by J.Edgar Hoover's FBI team. Once JFK is president, he withdraws from MM. RFK becomes her lover, gets her with child. MM's meds take their toll, she becomes ever more erratic, puts unbearable strain on the Brothers K when she announces atell-all press conference.... About midway, when the freshness of the lovers wanes and a certain sourness overtakes them, the story darkens and the mechanics of the many- leveled plot deflates the reader's gusto, though not Korda's. Many brilliant scenes, but not as artful or haunting as Sam Toperoff's 1991 MM novel, Queen of Desire. (Literary Guild Dual Selection for November)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780380720996
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
11/28/1993
Pages:
576
Product dimensions:
4.14(w) x 6.89(h) x 1.35(d)

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