Author Truman Capote
Publisher First Vintage International
Publication Date February 1, 1994
Genre: True Crime
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On November 15, 1959, in the small town of Holcomb, Kansas, four members of the Clutter family were savagely murdered by blasts from a shotgun held a few inches from their faces. There was no apparent motive for the crime, and there were almost no clues.
As Truman Capote reconstructs the murder and the investigation that led to the capture, trial, and execution of the killers, he generates both mesmerizing suspense and astonishing empathy. In Cold Blood is a work that transcends its moment, yielding poignant insights into the nature of American violence.
Through Truman Capote’s memorizing true crime account, we follow the case every step of the way. Beginning at the finding of the bodies and ending at the gallows. Not only does he skillfully craft this heinous crime but does so with the reader feeling empathy not only towards the Clutters but also their killers, Perry Smith, and Dick Hickcock. Describing their lackluster childhoods but the reader is brought back to Earth after reading Perry Smith’s confession and once again as their bodies swing lifelessly from a noose.
Capote writes with such skill that it is sometimes forgotten that these heinous crimes were true and happened fifty years ago. In Cold Blood is a heart-wrenching read that consumes your every being.