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About Truman Capote
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The most famous true crime novel of all time and one of the first non-fiction novels ever written; In Cold Blood is the bestseller that haunted its author long after he finished writing it.
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.
In this seductive, wistful masterpiece, Truman Capote created a woman whose name has entered the American idiom and whose style is a part of the literary landscape. Holly Golightly knows that nothing bad can ever happen to you at Tiffany's; her poignancy, wit, and naïveté continue to charm.
This volume also includes three of Capote's best-known stories, “House of Flowers,” “A Diamond Guitar,” and “A Christmas Memory,” which the Saturday Review called “one of the most moving stories in our language.” It is a tale of two innocents—a small boy and the old woman who is his best friend—whose sweetness contains a hard, sharp kernel of truth.
“A great breezy read . . . with Capote’s trademark wit, but also with genuine youthful awe at the exhilaration of late-forties New York.”—New York
A lost treasure only recently found, Truman Capote’s Summer Crossing is a precocious, confident first novel from one of the twentieth century’s greatest writers.
Set in New York just after World War II, the story follows a young carefree socialite, Grady McNeil, whose parents leave her alone in their Fifth Avenue penthouse for the summer. Left to her own devices, Grady turns up the heat on the secret affair she’s been having with a Brooklyn-born Jewish war veteran who works as a parking lot attendant. As the season passes, the romance turns more serious and morally ambiguous, and Grady must eventually make a series of decisions that will forever affect her life and the lives of everyone around her.
A landmark collection that brings together Truman Capote’s life’s work in the form he called his “great love,” The Complete Stories confirms Capote’s status as a master of the short story.
Ranging from the gothic South to the chic East Coast, from rural children to aging urban sophisticates, all the unforgettable places and people of Capote’s oeuvre are here, in stories as elegant as they are heartfelt, as haunting as they are compassionate. Reading them reminds us of the miraculous gifts of a beloved American original.
Tracing the career of a writer of uncertain parentage and omnivorous erotic tastes, Answered Prayers careens from a louche bar in Tangiers to a banquette at La Côte Basque, from literary salons to high-priced whorehouses. It takes in calculating beauties and sadistic husbands along with such real-life supporting characters as Colette, the Duchess of Windsor, Montgomery Clift, and Tallulah Bankhead. Above all, this malevolently finny book displays Capote at his most relentlessly observant and murderously witty.
In these gems of reportage Truman Capote takes true stories and real people and renders them with the stylistic brio we expect from great fiction. Here we encounter an exquisitely preserved Creole aristocrat sipping absinthe in her Martinique salon; an enigmatic killer who sends his victims announcements of their forthcoming demise; and a proper Connecticut householder with a ruinous obsession for a twelve-year-old he has never met. And we meet Capote himself, who, whether he is smoking with his cleaning lady or trading sexual gossip with Marilyn Monroe, remains one of the most elegant, malicious, yet compassionate writers to train his eye on the social fauna of his time.
At the age of twelve, Joel Knox is summoned to meet the father who abandoned him at birth. But when Joel arrives at the decaying mansion in Skully’s Landing, his father is nowhere in sight. What he finds instead is a sullen stepmother who delights in killing birds; an uncle with the face—and heart—of a debauched child; and a fearsome little girl named Idabel who may offer him the closest thing he has ever known to love.
Set on the outskirts of a small Southern town, The Grass Harp tells the story of three endearing misfits—an orphaned boy and two whimsical old ladies—who one day take up residence in a tree house. As they pass sweet yet hazardous hours in a china tree, The Grass Harp manages to convey all the pleasures and responsibilities of freedom. But most of all it teaches us about the sacredness of love, “that love is a chain of love, as nature is a chain of life.”
This volume also includes Capote’s A Tree of Night and Other Stories, which the Washington Post called “unobtrusively beautiful . . . a superlative book.”
Portraits and Observations is the first volume devoted solely to all the essays ever published by this most beloved of writers. From his travel sketches of Brooklyn, New Orleans, and Hollywood, written when he was twenty-two, to meditations about fame, fortune, and the writer’s art at the peak of his career, to the brief works penned during the isolated denouement of his life, these essays provide an essential window into mid-twentieth-century America as offered by one of its canniest observers. Included are such celebrated masterpieces of narrative nonfiction as “The Muses Are Heard” and the short nonfiction novel “Handcarved Coffins,” as well as many long-out-of-print essays, including portraits of Isak Dinesen, Mae West, Marcel Duchamp, Humphrey Bogart, and Marilyn Monroe.
Among the highlights are “Ghosts in Sunlight: The Filming of In Cold Blood, “Preface to Music for Chameleons, in which Capote candidly recounts the highs and lows of his long career, and a playful self-portrait in the form of an imaginary self-interview. The book concludes with the author’s last written words, composed the day before his death in 1984, the recently discovered
“Remembering Willa Cather,” Capote’s touching recollection of his encounter with the author when he was a young man at the dawn of his career.
Portraits and Observations puts on display the full spectrum of Truman Capote’s brilliance. Certainly, Capote was, as Somerset Maugham famously called him, “a stylist of the first quality.” But as the pieces gathered here remind us, he was also an artist of remarkable substance.
Holly Golightly, la protagonista de Desayuno en Tiffany's, es quizá el más seductor personaje creado por este maestro de seducción que fue Truman Capote. Atractiva sin ser guapa, tras rechazar una carrera de actriz en Hollywood, Holly se convierte en una estrella del Nueva York más sofisticado; bebiendo cócteles y rompiendo corazones, parece ganarse la vida pidiendo suelto para sus expediciones al tocador en los restaurantes y clubs de moda, y vive rodeada de tipos disparatados, desde un mafioso que cumple condena en Sing Sing y al que visita semanalmente, hasta un millonario caprichoso de afinidades nazis, pasando por un viejo barman secretamente enamorado de ella. Mezcla de picardía e inocencia, de astucia y autenticidad, Holly vive en la provisionalidad permanente, sin pasado, no queriendo pertenecera nada ni a nadie, sintiéndose desterrada en todas partes pese al glamour que la rodea, y soñando siempre en ese paraíso que para ella es Tiffany's, la famosa joyería neoyorquina. Desayuno en Tiffany's es una extraordinaria novela corta que, por sí sola, bastaría para consagrar a un autor.
The private letters of Truman Capote, lovingly assembled here for the first time by acclaimed Capote biographer Gerald Clarke, provide an intimate, unvarnished portrait of one of the twentieth century’s most colorful and fascinating literary figures.
Capote was an inveterate letter writer. He wrote letters as he spoke: emphatically, spontaneously, and passionately. Spanning more than four decades, his letters are the closest thing we have to a Capote autobiography, showing us the uncannily self-possessed naïf who jumped headlong into the post–World War II New York literary scene; the more mature Capote of the 1950s; the Capote of the early 1960s, immersed in the research and writing of In Cold Blood; and Capote later in life, as things seem to be unraveling. With cameos by a veritable who’s who of twentieth-century glitterati, Too Brief a Treat shines a spotlight on the life and times of an incomparable American writer.
Música para camaleones, un libro que Truman Capote presenta como una obra de literatura documental, bucea con implacable lucidez en la poesía y el horror de la vida; es el espléndido resultado de una necesidad de comunicación directa entre lector y materia narrativa, que Truman Capote buscó febrilmente para conseguir una escritura «sencilla y límpida como un arroyo de montaña». Una prosa en la que pudiera mantenerse al margen del tema tratado, sin influir con su estilo, juicios y opiniones. En palabras suyas: hacer del lector un observador o, mejor aún, el testigo de una experiencia verdadera que, contada bajo tal óptica, resultara mucho más subyugante que si el autor la interpretase al modo clásico. El libro está dividido en tres partes. En primer lugar, seis breves piezas iniciales de magistral concepción y ejecución. Luego, una novela corta, Ataúdes tallados a mano, lleva a sus últimas consecuencias el enfoque testimonial de A sangre fría y relata la espeluznante historia de Quinn, un psicópata solipsista que se dedica a asesinar macabramente a los jurados que en un juicio han votado en su contra. Finalmente, siete Conversaciones y retratos, entre los cuales destacan el magistral texto en el que Capote acompaña a una asistenta en «un día de trabajo» limpiando domicilios, la estremecedora entrevista a un maníaco asesino recluido en San Quintín, la agridulce y famosa semblanza de Marilyn Monroe y, desde luego, el desgarrador autorretrato del autor y su imaginario gemelo, en el que afirmó: «Soy alcohólico. Soy drogadicto. Soy homosexual. Soy un genio.»