“The single best book ever written on the Kennedy assassination” (Thomas Mallon, author of Mrs. Paine's Garage): A Kennedy insider tells the shocking story of Lee Harvey Oswald's path to killing JFK
Marina and Lee is an indispensable account of one of America's most traumatic events and a classic work of narrative history. In her meticulous—at times even moment by moment—account of Oswald's progress toward the assassination of JFK, Priscilla Johnson McMillan takes us inside Oswald's fevered mind and his manic marriage. Only a few weeks after the birth of their second child, Oswald’s wife, Marina, hears of Kennedy's death and discovers that Lee's rifle is missing from the garage where it was stored. She knows that her husband has killed the President.
McMillan came to the story with a unique knowledge of the two main characters. In the 1950s, she worked for Kennedy and had known him well for a time. Later, working in Moscow as a journalist, she interviewed Lee Harvey Oswald during his attempt to defect to the Soviet Union. When she heard his name again on November 22, 1963, she said, "My God! I know that boy!" Marina and Lee was written with the complete and exclusive cooperation of Oswald's Russian-born wife, Marina Prusakova, whom McMillan debriefed for seven months in the immediate aftermath of the President's assassination and her husband's nationally televised execution at the hands of Jack Ruby.
The truth is far more compelling, and unsettling, than the most imaginative conspiracy theory. Marina and Lee is a human drama that is outrageous, heartbreaking, tragic, fascinating—and real.
“It is not at all easy to describe the power of Marina and Lee . . . It is far better than any other book about Kennedy . . . Other books about the Kennedy assassination are all smoke and no fire. Marina and Lee burns.” —New York Times Book Review
McMillan, who translated Svetlana Alliluyeva's "Only One Year," had one interview with Lee Harvey Oswald in Moscow in 1959. After the Kennedy assassination she had privileged access to Oswald's widow Marina. And she was at one time an aide on JFK's Senate staff. Given these credentials and the nature of her subject, "Marina and Lee" is bound to excite interest among the curious, but skeptical readers may become even more so. McMillan apparently accepts the general conclusions of the Warren Commission Report, and her 544-page narrative is an attempt to get at Oswald's motives. In her view Oswald was acting out fantasies connected with an over-dependency on his mother. We are given intimate details of the Oswalds' masochistic marriage, of Marina's early life in Russia, of their ties to the Russian migr community in Dallas, and much else. The book sympathetically fleshes out a human picture of this unlikely couple, but who they actually were vis- -vis JFK, CIA, KGB, is an open question. Index, etc. 16 pages of photos. National ad/promo.