How did a coloring book spend 14 weeks on the New York Times Non-Fiction Best Sellers list???
The year was 1962. America was in love with the young family in the White House, speaking of them with awe and reverence. Then the JFK Coloring Book was released, and punctured all that. Conceived by publisher Alexander A. Roman, with drawings by Mad Magazine’s master caricaturist Mort Drucker and text by his Mad cohort Paul Laikin and Ratfink Room comedian Jackie Kannon, the book used the form of a coloring book supposedly crafted by four year old Caroline Kennedy to poke fun at the whole Kennedy clan, their friends and their fellow players on the political scene, including every one from Frank Sinatra to Jimmy Hoffa.
The publication of this unique volume lead off a whole Kennedy comedy stampede, with things like Vaughn Meader’s First Family albums coming in its wake. Comedy was replaced by tragedy with JFK’s assassination, and the Coloring Book which had once had print runs in the hundreds of thousands disappeared from bookstore shelves, not to return for over half a century.
Now the time has come to remember Kennedy and his family not just as tragic figures, but as the way they were and the way we saw them then.
Authors: Paul Laikin, Alexander A. Roman, Rochelle Davis