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Showing 1-10 of 1,052 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 1,756 reviews
on March 25, 2017
I tend to dislike any non-fiction novel. I came into reading this book with very low expectations, but was surprised by how much I enjoyed the novel. The mystery was truly captivating. I found myself not wanting to put the story down. I found it very interesting to follow a murder that actually occurred. All other murder mysteries I have read in the past were fictional. It was fascinating and even more chilling to know that the content in which I was reading really arose. I really appreciated the evident, in depth research that the author must have done prior the writing the book. This book was also really moving. The chilling story opened my eyes about the severity of murders. Overall, I would recommend reading the novel In Cold Blood. It truly influenced me as a person; the detailed descriptions caused me to grow. Although I did enjoy the novel, I did have a few dislikes. First, the book began at a very slow pace. The author took a great amount of time to set the scene causing me to get engrossed much later in the novel. Lastly, I warn potential readers of the detailed, harsh description that the novel entails. Depending on the type of reader you tend to be, the vulgar may repel you from the excellence of the novel.
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on March 29, 2017
A night passes in small Holcomb, Kansas, normal only until the morning when a whole family is found dead in their home. Thus begins In Cold Blood, a captivating tale of both murder mystery and escaping criminals. Not a moment is wasted in the novel, from painting each character with vivid detail to exploring even the smallest impacts of the Holcomb murder. The crowning achievement of this novel, no doubt, is its pioneering of telling a true story like that of a fictional one. There are defined acts and events told through a compelling narrative. Capote sets every scene up meticulously, flashing between narratives fittingly and allowing the reader to soak in all perspectives. Even the murderers are given time in the limelight, allowing an odd sense of understanding to bubble from them. Make no mistake, there are details that are askew. Not everything is exactly how it is portrayed in the story. The second act, too, has a tendency to stagnate. Still, the end product is an enthralling tale, and one of such impeccable polish at that.
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on June 6, 2017
This is absolutely one of my favorite books! I had to read it for my AP Language and Composition class my junior year, and it was so good that I decided to buy it for myself. The book was shipped and in great condition, but my only problem with it was that it was not the cover as pictured. Otherwise, if you are into murder stories and chasing killers, this book is for you!
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on March 13, 2014
More like 3 1/2 stars. I really enjoyed In Cold Blood. I was immediately drawn in. The writing style was incredibly descriptive, but it never got boring. The first half of the book, where you follow two separate stories as they come together, was incredibly compelling. The second half was less so, and dragged a little at times, but was still good and interesting. Capote's opinion of the characters in the 2nd half was clear and seemed a little less objective, almost directive, but still a lot of research and well-presented. The book's portrayal of the characters' relationships and dynamics was also insightful. I found the first half provocative, entertaining, well-researched and well-written, and the second half a little slow and biased. I would nevertheless recommend.
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on July 5, 2015
In his later years, Truman Capote became a celebrity on late night talk shows due to his eccentricity and the oddball attraction he provided for curious audiences. This was the period of time when his alcoholism and alienation of many of his colleagues (due to tell all comments he made publicly), most likely dominated his career. Lost during this time, was the fact that Truman Capote was indeed a gifted writer.

Having re-read "In Cold Blood" recently, I was happily re-acquainted with his powerful craftsmanship, in a truly riveting recounting of the murders of the Clutter family in Holcomb, Kansas in 1959. While the brutal nature of the crime cannot be overlooked, Capote delves deeply and expertly into the many people who formed an integral part of this tragic event, from the Clutters themselves, to the investigators of the crime, the townspeople in the small community where events unfolded, and of course, the murderers themselves.

One can read into this fascinating story the questions that motivated Capote's curiosity about the crime itself, the men who committed it, and the profound effect it had upon the people who lived In Holcomb. Some criticism has been leveled at the book for obvious conversations and other input in which Capote took some liberties regarding detail. It is a clever weave, however, for never does the reader feel jolted when Capote goes off script in his descriptions surrounding the event.

While the crime itself was sensationalized on a national basis, Capote skillfully avoids the sensational nature of the horror itself, and study how and possibly why, this happened.

A wonderful read. It is interesting to note that this was the last novel that Capote finished prior to his death. The story of Capote's life during this time is as interesting as the fine investigative effort and excellent novel he labored to produce.
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on January 1, 2017
I love Capote's writing. Everyone talks about this book never realizing that he's written so many things.
In Cold Blood was one of Capote's last books. Perhaps after watching the hanging of the criminals, 1st degree murder X4, according to the law. The crimes, & subsequent death penalties for the perpetrators really made Capote "see the world's" bad & worst.
Capote lived in a high society environment. Gossip was an important part of his life...
The murders of the farming family's was horrifying. Now, 2016, it's kind of mundane.
Currently the USA's population is so desensitized to violence etc.
The writing is lush w/ amazing attention to details!
Copote's writing was/is terrific...
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on December 14, 2014
Everyone knows this book. It was the first of a genre and according to many made Truman Capote a household name but also destroyed him. I cannot comment on either of those issues since I never knew Mr Capote personally and while I was around when the book was written and published I was too young to know about his celebrity at the time. But the book is well written and opens a door into a time period very different from the one we live in today. The book conveys the time period to us and the character of these men and to a certain extent their victims. It shows the essential humanity of criminals involved here. One can only winder if perhaps things had been slightly different in terms of their lives, they might have never embarked on their lives of criminality. Not to mention one can ponder the context of the crime and had the quirks in these two men's characters had been slightly different the horrendous events which occurred that night may well not have occurred. The enormous waste of the life both of the victims but also two men who could have been quite different than the cold bloodied criminals they became.

I have always been opposed to the death penalty for the simple reason I believe it is immoral but I can see how the participants here were condemned by the jury and how no one felt the slightest unease in hanging them. Having been an attorney for over 30 years I am also horrified by the depictions of the trial and the actions taken by the judge, district attorney and defense attorneys here in the conduct of the trial. While there is little doubt as to their guilt, they did not receive a fair trial which our Constitution provides to all even the most heinous of criminals. That justice as well was a victim of this crime is horrendous.

This book is not dated and well worth the read.
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on September 2, 2015
After watching "Capote" I finally read In Cold Blood, Capote's masterwork. The story of a sudden and unexplainable multiple murder in a small town in the midwest, and the detective work and judicial workings that brought the killers to justice was like an auto-accident where one cannot look away. I was enthralled from the beginning. Capote's poetic turn of phrase, his both cutting and tender reflections on the people who were pulled into this tragedy were simply mesmerizing. His own childhood and woundings become the structure through which he strives to understand the killer's motivations. I am glad I saw the movie first, with Phillip Seymour Hoffman's stellar performance, as it imbued the reading of the book with a sense of omniscience that offered even more depth. Capote's revolutionary techniques of making a story of the non-fiction happenings were implemented seamlessly. From beginning to end, I remained fascinated and appalled at the workings of the heart and minds of the killers, and the community that was so deeply impacted by the murders.
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on April 13, 2014
In Cold Blood conquered my ADHD and I read it cover to cover during a long flight.

A couple things I keep thinking about:
55 years ago, when Kansas was even less populated, the glamorous Truman Capote and Harper Lee spend a considerable amount of time there researching this book. Is there presence remembered?

It's a book about the impact of a horrendous crime on a small community. It's about Kansas as much as crime. I try to imagine the impact of a literary celebrity mingling with Kansans in the early 60s in, besides Holcomb, Leavenworth, Wyandotte Co, Johnson County, and Kansas City. There are photos of him at parties in Lawrence. How strange!

Whether or not his "memory techniques" were as accurate as he claimed, he really captured the culture. Austere, narrow, but not as harsh or reactionary as outsides often assume. It's not extreme to see alcohol or smoking as sins. The little communities have their own flavor of stoic conservatism quite distinct from the fiery, sexy, mean-spirited south. I still think Kansas is a miserable place, but a unique miserable place worth understanding.
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on May 20, 2017
Capote is a master at his craft. It is very easy to intend to spend 30 minutes and get lost for hours.
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