Listening In: The Secret White House Recordings of John F. Kennedy - Ted Widmer, Caroline Kennedy Most of the conversations here are a lot more mundane than you might expect. The recordings included were chosen to show what it was like day to day to be a president facing many issues. They don't reveal any big secrets or even much new information. Even the meetings about serious issues don't make a lot of sense. All the people talk in a sort of shorthand, because they were all familiar with the particulars and the conversations weren't meant for outside ears. This is worth reading and listening to if you have a lot of patience and you like history. I thought it was especially interesting to see how much of Kennedy's time was spent cultivating good will (read: sucking up) with previous U.S. presidents and with leaders of other countries. That basic courtesy was essential to his effectiveness.