1 President Kennedy by Richard Reeves. We knew he was no saint. Now we have 800 carefully researched pages to tell us that J.F.K. was more Hollywood than Harvard, a gifted politician who relied on his charm rather than deep understanding and conviction. He was often ''careless and dangerously disorganized.'' The image of vigor was also an illusion: hormone shots compensated for failing adrenal glands and amphetamines perked him up. Reeves' dose of reality is a needed antidote to the cloying hagiographies that have marked the 30th anniversary of J.F.K.'s death.

2 Lenin's Tomb: The Last Days of the Soviet...

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