What Really Happened

  • by Rielle Hunter
  • Narrated by Cassandra Campbell
  • 8 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

The John Edwards - Rielle Hunter affair made headlines for years. "One of the biggest political scandals of all time", "a fall from grace", "a modern day tragedy"—it’s a story that has been reported, distorted, and spun over and over again by the media, by political aides, by the US government, and by supposed friends. There is, however, someone who actually knows the truth, someone who lived it from day one—the woman at the heart of the story itself: Rielle Hunter.
In What Really Happened, Hunter offers an extremely personal account of her relationship with John Edwards: the facts of how they actually met; how their accidental love started and escalated; what it was like to fall in love with a married man who decided to run for president; the surprise of becoming pregnant during the campaign; how the affair became public; the extensive coverup, and finally, what happened in the years after Edwards publicly admitted to being the father of their daughter, Frances Quinn.
Meet Edwards’ political players and get an intimate look at how they really operated. Learn about the evolution of friends, enablers, and do-gooders, their involvement with the affair and Edwards' 2008 presidential campaign, and where the money from Rachel "Bunny" Mellon and Fred Baron actually went. This book doesn’t spin the truth to achieve a prettier picture or a better story. It isn’t about changing anyone’s mind. It’s simply the facts, the truth of what really happened.
Rielle Hunter has been writing since 1993 and has studied meditation, yoga, and Eastern philosophies. What Really Happened is her first book. She has one daughter, Frances Quinn.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Your jaw will drop! You'll puke in horror!

What made the experience of listening to What Really Happened the most enjoyable?

Frankly, I can't stop listening to this delusional narcissistic whack job (for other case studies, see Julie Powell "Cleaving" and Karrine Steffans (well, everything she's written.) Hunter has the absolute gall to whine for over 8 hours that she and Edwards were just the most well-intentioned pair of home wreckers you'll ever meet. You'll recoil in horror as she blames Elizabeth Edwards for John's cheating ways and creating barriers for the author to be with John. I'm not kidding when I say that the author devotes countless hours literally waiting for Elizabeth to die from cancer so that Rielle can get her love life back on track and spend more time with John. To top it all off, before Elizabeth dies, Rielle even states (no vague insinuations here, folks) that John and Elizabeth's kids really liked her and couldn't wait to see her again.Yet Rielle consistently describes Elizabeth as an interfering and infuriating B@#$H. Yeah. Right.In addition, she details in frustration how difficult it was to wait for John's staff and financial backers to pay for her travel, food, shopping and housing...um, whom owed her a living for getting knocked up?? Could someone tell me?? Oh, that's right: NO ONE.Anyhow, the one thing that I must give her credit for is the dead-on accurate description of "Johnnie" Edwards, a morally questionable moron that stumbles around in life, making excuses about living deceitfully, unapologetic for being a cheater and ruining Elizabeth's life. That's why Hunter and Edwards are so perfect for each other- pot, meet kettle!


Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Yes, both - the feeling of witnessing a car accident that you simply cannot look away from. The astonishing lack of accountability for what Hunter and Edwards did is simply un-freakin'-believable.


Any additional comments?

Cassandra Campbell is a great narrator.

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- Citizen Arcane

Scandal me some more!

I got hooked on the John Edwards story in Game Change. For my money, all other political scandals pale in comparison.

But wait! Should you get this much pleasure out of the misfortunes of flawed mortals? Definitely not. But if you're going to do it anyway, this book is good!

First - Cassandra Campbell's narration is flawless. She found the perfect tone and did an amazing job with it.

Also - The writing's great.Easy prose. Story has good pace and flow. It tells you everything you want to know and not much you don't (I'm not a huge fan of the "How childbirth changed my life" narrative, but it passes).

If you read, "The Politician", this is a fascinatingly different perspective on the same events. It gave me a total Rashomon buzz.

As to who to believe, I'm going with Rielle. Here's why: She is SPECTACULARLY shameless. Her lack of guilt about that whole adultery thing is just jaw dropping. Not so much as a tickle of remorse. So, why would she lie? About what?

Which brings me to my final point: If there's not enough speaking ill of the dead going on in your life, you can fill up here. Not a lot of (any) sympathy for Elizabeth, but crazy, screaming shrew stories galore.

Dig in.
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- Kelley

Book Details

  • Release Date: 06-26-2012
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.