Once Upon a Secret

Front Cover
Hutchinson, 2012 - Mistresses - 208 pages
10 Reviews

In 1963, Mimi Beardsley was a naive young American girl, very much a product of her class and time - she had attended the same exclusive girls' school as Jackie Bouvier, now installed in the White House as the president's wife. Which is also where Mimi found herself, as an 18-year-old intern. The JFK White House was a place for which she was not remotely prepared, dominated by the charismatic and sexually rapacious figure of the president. Within days, they had started a relationship.

There are several extraordinary things about Mimi's story. One is that she has evaded notice from any of the biographers of JFK and other chroniclers of the heady days and sexual shenanigans of Camelot. Only by chance did a reporter in 2006 follow up a mention of her name in a book about JFK, and doorstep her - now a married grandmother living quietly in New York - to find out whether she was the Mimi Beardsely mentioned in a passing reference.

This is all the more surprising given the length of time the affair continued - 18 months - and the fact that it was ended only by his assassination.

Mimi Beardsley Alford has decided, after 40 years of silence and deep reflection, to tell her story. But this is not just a personal memoir of a young woman of her generation and class coming of age in the 1960s, and her relationship with JFK. She also examines the significant impact it had on her life and relationships since, why she has chosen to remain silent for so long, and why she feels that this is the moment to speak out.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Whisper1 - LibraryThing

If you like to read about the life of President John F. Kennedy, then this is a book for you. Mimi was a mere 19 years of age when she obtained a coveted internship working with the press corp. at the ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - GrlIntrrptdRdng - LibraryThing

More like 3.5. I don't normally read books like this but this one interested me. The stories shared are very selective and Mimi doesn't go into great detail about her relationship with JFK only ... Read full review

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About the author (2012)

Mimi Beardsley Alford is a retired church administrator in New York and has two children and four grandchildren.

Bibliographic information