- Paperback: 368 pages
- Publisher: Vintage; Reprint edition (Feb. 1 1994)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0679745580
- ISBN-13: 978-0679745587
- Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 1.8 x 20.3 cm
- Shipping Weight: 590 g
- Average Customer Review: 238 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #11,557 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
In Cold Blood Paperback – Feb 1 1994
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"Until one morning in mid-November of 1959, few Americans--in fact, few Kansans--had ever heard of Holcomb. Like the waters of the river, like the motorists on the highway, and like the yellow trains streaking down the Santa Fe tracks, drama, in the shape of exceptional happenings, had never stopped there." If all Truman Capote did was invent a new genre--journalism written with the language and structure of literature--this "nonfiction novel" about the brutal slaying of the Clutter family by two would-be robbers would be remembered as a trail-blazing experiment that has influenced countless writers. But Capote achieved more than that. He wrote a true masterpiece of creative nonfiction. The images of this tale continue to resonate in our minds: 16-year-old Nancy Clutter teaching a friend how to bake a cherry pie, Dick Hickock's black '49 Chevrolet sedan, Perry Smith's Gibson guitar and his dreams of gold in a tropical paradise--the blood on the walls and the final "thud-snap" of the rope-broken necks.
From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. In the wake of the award-winning film Capote, interest in the author's 1965 true crime masterpiece has spiked. Capote's spellbinding narrative plumbs the psychological and emotional depths of a senseless quadruple murder in America's heartland. In the audio version, narrator Brick keeps up with the master storyteller every step of the way. In fact, Brick's surefooted performance is nothing short of stunning. He settles comfortably into every character on this huge stage—male and female, lawman and murderer, teen and spinster—and moves fluidly between them, generating the feel of a full-cast production. He assigns varying degrees of drawl to the citizens of Finney County, Kans., where the crimes take place, and supplements with an arsenal of tension-building cadences, hard and soft tones, regional and foreign accents, and subtle inflections, even embedding a quiver of grief in the voice of one character. This facile audio actor delivers an award-worthy performance, well-suited for a tale of such power that moves not only around the country but around the territory of the human psyche and heart. Available as a Vintage paperback. (Mar.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
I guess I was expecting a fiction book from a fiction author, and instead got a rather long-winded book written with what seemed to be little imagination.
As I read it, I realized that non-fiction does not lend itself well to imaginitive writing.
So, while the book is well written and an 'interesting' change from fictional novels, I found it less interesting and suspenseful. I mean, the book starts with the slaying of the most interesting characters in the entire book. It is tough to recover into an 'interesting' story from that plot line.
I will read other Capote books, but stick to his Fiction in the future.
2 stars deducted for high "boring factor".
And Capote can write, which was what I was looking to verify. His approach is clever; he’s literary, even flashy, in the beginning, but because he doesn’t want to alienate the “average reader, or so I’m assuming (it is a crime story after all), he pulls back and writes plainly for several chapters. Toward the end, he shows off a little, but never too much. Generally, he employs a less-is-more approach and his description is succinct yet compelling.
Really, there’s so much to like about this book. The psychological profiles and personalities of the criminals, the backgrounds of the victims, the townsfolk of Holcomb, Kansas and their perspectives, the absurdity of the justice system (re appeals and delays); it’s all utterly engrossing. Capote did loads of research and thought carefully about how to present his findings. The result is smart entertainment.
If you’re a book snob, In Cold Blood should pass your test. If you’re interested in true crime, I doubt there are many who can scribble about it like Capote can. There’s a reason this book still gets shelf space. It’s good.
I’ve heard other writers ridicule Truman Capote. Perhaps they were contemptuous of his flamboyant nature. Or perhaps they were just jealous of his writing.
Troy Parfitt is the author of Why China Will Never Rule the World
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Will try to watch the movie.Read more