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180 Reviews
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46 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gruesome, captivating and tragic
This really is essential reading for everyone over the age of about 14. A classic. Truman Capote recounts the story of the murders of four members of the Clutter family, one November night in 1959, and provides details of the events leading up to the murders, what the killers (Dick and Perry) did whilst on the run, their arrest, trial and punishment. I real a lot of...
Published on 13 July 2006 by Mrs Miggins Pie Shoppe

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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Truman Capote's defining work
This is part murder mystery, part psychological suspense thriller with an intricately unravelling plot that would leave fans of Michael Connelly or Patricia Cornwell quivering for more. But it is not fiction. Truman Capote literally created a genre with this book, the true account of a quadruple murder in Kansas that shocked the nation. In another author's hand, this...
Published on 14 Mar 2007 by Sam J. Ruddock


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4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars, 20 July 2014
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A good read but written in fiction style rather than as a non-fiction.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What a read!, 20 Feb 2007
I remember this book coming out in the 60,s.I have my copy from then;I think this the 1st. book of thiS genre I ever read,and I became a true crime freak from that day on.DO READ, it's the story of random violence for no reason and the consequences that followed.
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5.0 out of 5 stars I installed an alarm at my house after reading it, 27 Aug 2014
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I installed an alarm at my house after reading it
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 26 July 2014
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Very well written, very interesting as well
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic, 5 Jun 2006
By 
G. L. Haggett "glynlhaggett" (UK) - See all my reviews
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The term "classic" is very overused, but now and again a work of art comes along which genuinely justifies the use of the word.

This is the true story of the murder of the eminently respectable Clutter family in small-town Kansas. The style of Capote's account is refreshingly plain and unjudgemental, concentrating instead on the facts of the matter and investigating the background of the killers and seeking some sort of explanation for how they came to behave the way they did.

While he pulls no punches about the evil of their conduct, he is also keen to present the other side of the story; forty years on, justice (how can men be tried before a jury some of whose members were acquainted with the victims of the crime?) and the debate on whether or not it is appropriate for a civilised society to execute those who offend against its standards has moved on. I suspect, however, that this was a ground-breaking book in its time, both in its style and format and in its even-handedness.

Like many others, I came to this book having seen the recent film. It was well worth the effort.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 18 Aug 2014
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a very good read, cant recommend enough
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 17 Aug 2014
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All went well, no problem with order.
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16 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The ultimate synthesis of the art and craft of the writer, 1 Mar 2006
By 
I. Curry "IDC" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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Should one attempt a review of something that is already acknowledged as a classic work? Normally I would err towards not giving my two pennies worth. A 500 word review on Amazon from a novice is hardly going to make a dent in the reams already written in the world of literary criticism, from middle school to doctoral degree. However there are certain exceptions. My three rules for reviewing classics can be summed up as:
1. They must be temporally understandable - something written in what can be recognised as the modern world, which pretty much means the 19th Century onwards;
2. They must have really kindled an urge to review - something in the text reaches out and touches you as an individual. Not just an acknowledgement that they are great, but that they actually mean something, and that your review can be a person account of this; and
3. There is a reason for any renewed interest in the title. All to often this can be a film, an anniversary or something relevant in the news which brings the book back to mind, or back to attention.
And 'In Cold Blood' ticks all of these boxes. The film, Capote, covers the laboured, difficult months of the book's original conception and completion. The book is highly relevant to our times, touching on themes which are still topical and divisive. And more importantly the book had a profound effect on me, the reader.
I wish I could say that I had come across this book a long time ago, and am merely recounting the review for the benefit of the new readers who are drawn to it from the up coming film. But the truth is I had no idea of its existence prior to seeing the first trailer. That Capote was a contemporary and often seen as the better of Vidal Gore struck me, as in my mind Gore was well known, and Capote was completely new. But I am extremely thankful to the film for introducing me to this work.
In Cold Blood marks something of an apogee, the successful synthesis of excellence in narrative and mastery of journalism. It is a novel woven with the threads of fact to create a new genre. Although attempted before, here it reaches its true peak of accomplishment. 'In Cold Blood' is the story of a mass killing, the slaughter of a innocent family. It is the story that expands from the original news clipping that so excited Capote's interest, and envelops and involves the reader like very few books.
As an avid reader, and sometime writer, of narrative history, this can be regarded as a benchmark for future endeavour. The journalistic excellence is marked by the time Capote spent in the town, in Kansas, with the killers, with the police and investigators. In short Capote immersed himself in to the world, and cupped out the truth, spilling it onto the page with a literary flourish that draws the reader and immerses them into the same world. The town of Holcomb is no longer a hicksville stop on the Sante Fe express, but a real place filled with recognisable personalities. The predilections and peccadilloes of the townspeople render them as realistic as the people we pass everyday on the street. In short Holcomb becomes familiar and known to the reader.
The Clutter family is dissected with almost clinical precision, so that their characteristics, their personalities, shine through. Their ultimate fate is always hanging over these horrifyingly vivid descriptions, an ominous, portentous gloom that penetrates every page, and keeps the book moving with a pace and gripping interest. But the most horrifyingly drawing of all the aspects is the recreation of the capture, incarceration, trial and ultimate death of the killers, Perry Smith and Dick Hickock. Capote's relationship with the killers, Dick in particular, makes the ultimate, and inevitable, ending all the more tragic.
This is a book for anyone who appreciates writing and English as an art form. It is the brilliant, wonderful synthesis of so many crafts, and Capote shows that he is the master of them all. Anyone who has an interest in reading history, biography or true crime should also make sure this book takes its rightful place at the top of their 'to buy' list - it is simply the best of its kind and as rivalled but still unbeaten.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 28 Aug 2014
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essential a level reading
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best book I've ever read!, 25 Sep 2013
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This is probably the best book I've ever read. Its was so good I read it twice within the space of a month. The detail that the book goes into with the people and places is phenomenal. I've never read anything quite like this and don't think I'll ever will. If your debating over reading this book then don't as you won't be disappointed.
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In Cold Blood: A True Account of a Multiple Murder and its Consequences (Essential Penguin)
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