Mid - April 1961: the Bay of Pigs Invasion. May 5, 1961: Alan Shepard becomes the first American in space. Late May 1961: President and Mrs. Kennedy travel to Paris. Of the three events, the last might seem the least significant, but that visit - of which JFK famously quipped "I am the man who accompanied Jacqueline Kennedy to Paris, and I have enjoyed it" - led to a spectacular feat. The first lady charmed Parisians with her style, grace and fluent French and scored an even bigger coup when the French Minister of Culture promised to loan her the "Mona Lisa," the most valuable work in the Louvre. Margaret Leslie Davis perfectly captures the magic of the Kennedy White House, behind - the - scenes maneuvering and the stories of the major players on both sides of the Atlantic in Mona Lisa in Camelot.
In the beginning, only Mrs. Kennedy and Andr