Marina and Lee

Priscilla Johnson McMillan, Author
Priscilla Johnson McMillan. Harper & Row, $15 ISBN 0-06-012953-0
Reviewed on: 07/08/2013
Release date: 01/01/1977
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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 émigré community in Dallas, and much else. The book sympathetically fleshes out a human picture of this unlikely couple, but who they actually were vis-à-vis JFK, CIA, KGB, is an open question. Index, etc. 16 pages of photos. National ad/promo. (Oct. 26, 1977)
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