What Remains

What Remains

A Memoir of Fate, Friendship, and Love

Large Print - 2006 | Large print ed
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"What Remains" is a vivid and haunting memoir about a girl from a working-class town who becomes an award-winning television producer and marries a prince, Anthony Radziwill, one of a long line of Polish royals and nephew of President John F. Kennedy. Carole Radziwill's story is part fairy tale, part tragedy. She tells both with great candor and wit.Carole grew up in a small suburb with a large, eccentric cast of characters. She spent her childhood summers with her grandparents and an odd assortment of aunts and uncles in their poorly plumbed A-frame on the banks of a muddy creek in upstate New York.At the age of nineteen, Carole struck out for New York City to find a different life. Her career at ABC News led her to the refugee camps of Cambodia, to a bunker in Tel Aviv, to the scene of the Menendez murders. Her marriage led her into the old world of European nobility and the newer world of American aristocracy."What Remains" begins with loss and returns to loss. A small plane plunges into the ocean, carrying John Kennedy, Anthony's cousin, and Carolyn Bessette Kennedy, Carole's closest friend. Three weeks later Anthony dies of cancer. The summer of the plane crash, the four friends were meant to be cherishing Anthony's last days. Instead, Carole and Anthony mourned John and Carolyn, even as Carole planned her husband's memorial.Carole Radziwill has an anthropologist's sensibility and a journalist's eye. She writes about families--their customs, their secrets, and their tangled intimacies-- with remarkable acuity and humanity. She explores the complexities of marriage, the importance of friendship, and the challenges of self-invention with unflinching honesty. This is acompelling story of love, loss, and, ultimately, resilience.
Publisher: Waterville, Me. : Thorndike Press, 2006, c2005
Edition: Large print ed
ISBN: 9780786283835
Characteristics: 448 p. (large print) : ill. ; 23 cm


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Nov 19, 2016

This was a disjointed memoir about the lives and deaths of some wealthy people. The story was hard to follow at times with three female characters called Carole, Carolyn and Caroline. The men seemed to be extremely narcissistic, shallow individuals whose lives weren't even interesting but whose deaths were tragic. It seemed they all lived a very shallow life of money and celebrity with no redeeming qualities. I would say don't bother reading it.

Aug 14, 2014

Very well written. It has some heavy themes that will make you sad, but it interesting to hear stories about Jon-Jon and his best friend Anthony. Definitely a great read if you are interested in the Kennedy family history.

Jul 24, 2012

Admit it, you're here because of a certain reality TV show! Me too. This is an intriguing memoir that starts slowly but builds to a very emotional ending. Have your hankies at hand! It's a fascinating story on many levels. It raised questions for me about cancer treatments given to terminal patients and death denial. Also of interest is Radziwill 's portrayal of Carolyn Bessette who took such a beating in the press after her tragic death.Radziwill really humanizes her in this book.

Jul 22, 2012

Excellent memoir. I'm surprised that this "real housewife of NYC" was best friends with Carolyn Kennedy and has the ability to write such a haunting account of love and loss.

halla Jun 19, 2012

This book is memoir about major deaths that have occurred in the life of Ms. Radziwill - the most significant being the protracted and difficult death of her husband. After a 5 year aggressive battle with a recurring cancer he passes away a few weeks after their closest friends (and cousins) JFK jr and Carolyn Bessette.

In another writer's hands this memoir might have been heartfelt but filled with shlock metaphors and overworked cliches. I think most people have something really profound that they could say about living out an entire marriage under the weight of a hungry, fatal illness. I don't think most people could tell this story in a way that would stir deep empathy in mind of a reader who is a complete stranger. Yet, that's exactly what Carole Radziwill does. I will never think about cancer the same way again.

As they are tight buddies, and Ms. Radziwill has married into Bouvier and Kennedy and associated circles, there are long descriptions of conversations and times with JFK jr. and his wife. They are usually described in the context of her husband's illness or care. Other family members pop up as well, but there is no mud slinging here. This is memoir about the untimely end of a man and a marriage defined by his illness. It is a great book that gives the reader a window on what the battling but well spouse goes through during such times.


I truly commend Carole for her spirit, love, and integrity!

I am shocked to how much she endured with her husband, Anthony, dying of cancer, for 6 or 7 years of being together (since they got engaged, that when he was diagnosed, and married).

Was that really her being so in love with him or rather trying to look good and not bad in front of his mom/relatives and herself? I wonder.

All in all, this is a great read, and does provide a glimpse to the Empress of Maladies, Cancer, itself, and what it does to a human body.

joiedevivre Oct 09, 2011

This is a very good book but the author was in denial as she didn't seem to realize that John's marriage was coming to an end. The author shares the responsibility for their death because she helped keep that awful marriage together.

Shsunon Aug 10, 2011

Carole Radziwill copes with her husband's devastating illness and the loss of two good friends of the famous Kennedy family. Well-written.

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