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The Private Passion of Jackie Kennedy Onassis: Portrait of a Rider

by Vicky Moon 

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • ISBN: 0060524111
  • Release Date: 01 May, 2004
  • Manufacturer: Regan Books
  • List Price: $45.00

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"WHEN IT COMES TO HORSES, THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A PASSING FANCY. THEY'RE A CONSTANT IN LIFE."
--FROM THE PREFACE

In The Private Passion of Jackie Kennedy Onassis, Vicky Moon illustrates just how vital a role horses played throughout Jackie’s often tumultuous life. Propped up on a horse when she was just a year old, throughout her childhood Jackie turned to her pony Buddy to distract her from the stress of her parents’ precarious marriage. As a woman struggling under the intense pressures of her role as First Lady, riding a horse through the countryside was a much-needed tonic. And later in her life, as a mourning widow and then a reluctant celebrity, riding offered Jackie peace and privacy. Whether cantering up and down the emerald hills of Ireland, galloping through the woods in New Jersey, racing cross-country or taking long, quiet rides with her children down the dirt trails of Virginia’s hunt country, Jackie’s lifelong passion for horses was a mainstay during difficult years, a refuse from a life in the limelight, and a constant source of joy.


Now in addition to the elegant, stunning images from every stage of her life – photographs taken while out riding to the hounds, at the steeplechase with Jack, with Caroline on her pony – Jackie’s story unfolds through Moon’s fresh and engaging narrative, sprinkled with anecdotes and memories from those who knew Jackie not only as one of the most adored women in the world, but simply as a graceful and talented horsewoman.

THE PRIVATE PASSION OF
JACKIE KENNEDY ONASSIS
PORTRAIT OF A RIDER
BY
VICKY MOON

“For a little girl longing for her elusive father, a pony offered companionship and comfort. As a political wife aching for the presence of her husband and burdened with the crushing pressures as first lady, riding a horse brought sanctuary. The desperately lonely celebrity widow eventually found that time spent alone with her horses brought anonymity and solace.”

With never before seen photos of Jackie riding peacefully alone, winning ribbon after ribbon, and enjoying leisurely rides with her children, Jackie’s “private passion” and the strength and serenity she drew from that passion are now fully and magnificently documented. This is a candid and personal account of a young Jackie’s introduction to the world of horses, of the life lessons and truths she learned from the sport and its people, of her foray into the public eye on her husband’s arm, and of the retreat into privacy and peace that riding allowed her.


Vicky Moon, In Her Own Words….

Thoughts on writing THE PRIVATE PASSION OF JACKIE KENNEDYONASSIS: Portrait of A Rider.

I have lived in the village of Middleburg, Virginia for most of my life. It’s horse heaven with wide-open fields, horse farms and quaint country lanes. The town became widely know in the early 1960’s when the Kennedy’s made it their weekend retreat. Jackie loved it here; it offered her a place to get away from the glare along with the opportunity to ride her horses, which she loved. I too have been a rider all my life. And I have also been a writer. I saw Jackie when she came here. I chatted with her on several occasions and I photographed her on horseback too

In the fall of 2001, I wrote a book called The Middleburg Mystique: A Peek Inside the Gates of Middleburg, Virginia. It’s all about the horses, lavish parties, elegant estates, murders, and rivalries in this hamlet. As I was going through the photos for the cover of the book, I came across a dear one of Jackie on a horse. She’s holding John and Caroline is riding along on her pony.


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