In Cold Blood is Truman Capote's masterpiece, and a masterpiece of seemingly novelized nonfiction. It was one of the first works of this type in American literature, and one of the few that reads as well today as it did when first published in the mid-1960s. Capote takes you into the minds of the principal characters very successfully, the two killers & the victims & the lawmen & acquaintances of these individuals. Even though most readers will know the outlines of the story ahead of time, Capote's structure & pacing gives the book great suspense & tantalizes your curiousity to know more.
In contrast to Capote's later career, and how he is depicted in the recent film (which focuses on the period in which he wrote In Cold Blood), the author does not shadow this book. He makes only a single appearance very late in the book, in a single sentence in which the "author" is talking to one of the two condemned men on death row in Kansas. So the book's strength comes, in no small part, from the invisibility of the author throughout.
Narration is excellent.
I'd started reading "In Cold Blood" a number of years ago and had lost interest. I picked up the audio version as part of my renewd commitment to read as many literary classics as possible and I am glad I did. It's hard to believe this book was written so many years ago. It's spellbinding and the narration brings out a quality that I missed when reading it before. When a book can keep you sitting in your car, not wanting it to finish, then it's a good book and this one is one of those. Highly recommended!
"Never trust anyone who has not brought a book with them." --Lemony Snicket
To experience Truman Capote's genre-defining work for the first time with Scott Brick at the helm was a real treat. Brick's understated inflection and characterizations of the victims and the killers are subtle, but powerful. This riveting listen - a true audio masterpiece - rivals the best thrillers.
I am an avid listener. I listen between 75-100 hours per month on my iPhone: 60% fiction to 40% non-fiction.
In Cold Blood is true tale of a grizzly set of murders of four of the Clutter family in Kansas. Set in 1959, Capote brings this tale to vivid life and Technicolor description. I especially like the way he helps you to get to know each character -- good and bad; he also gives you excellent depth in the supporting characters. From the depth of these characterizations, he weaves a very descriptive tale which draws the listener forward through charter and verse.
Scott Brick is one of my favorite narrators and he brings an added bonus to the work. This novel will be liked by the who-dunnit crowd even though who-dunnit is know; the thriller people will love it as well. Add this book to the bucket list!
I'm a new fan of the author. You'll believe you've watched this first hand, the writing takes you into the home and into the heads of every character. Really a great book.
I expected this to be a good listen, since the book has been both a critical and popular since success since the 60's. It turned out to to be the most engrossing audiobook I have enjoyed to date. It is of course very well written, but I think the masterful reading by Scott Brick is what put it over the top for me. If you like true crime, mysteries, etc., I could not recommend a book more highly.
I can find a book to love in any genre -- a beautifully written classic, an interesting mystery or sci-fi, a trashy romance. Bring it!
STORY (true crime) - In Cold Blood takes place in the late 1950's and early '60's. It is the story of two young hoodlums (Dick and Perry) who travel to a small rural town in Kansas to commit a robbery. They end up brutally murdering an entire family. Husband, wife, teenaged son and daughter - gone. And for no apparent reason. You will "get into the heads" of the murderers as they plan the crime, travel to the scene and actually commit the murders, and you will learn how they think and what drives them. The killings occur early in the story, with the rest of the book dedicated to following Dick and Perry as they flee and as the police try to apprehend them. As the story unfolds, the details of the crime are revealed, and you will learn how Dick and Perry's childhoods shaped them into the young murderers they became. Don't want to give anything away, but you will also learn what ultimately happens to them.
The story is very well-written and reads like fiction as opposed to a true crime documentary. There's mystery and suspense, but the story is very character-driven so don't expect any fancy detective work or thrilling chase scenes. I very much enjoyed the character development and getting to know Dick and Perry, but sometimes there was a little too much family history, which is why I rated the book a 4.5 instead of a 5.
PERFORMANCE - Love Scott Brick!
OVERALL (actual rating 4.5) - Recommended for mature readers, male or female. Even though the murders were brutal, they were "tastefully" described with a minimum of gory detail. The book is pretty clean, with only tiny sexual references and perhaps a bit of cursing (don't really remember.)
A great book. It's amazing how in depth he gets into the lives of everyone surrounding the case. A really captivating story.
The only funny thing is, after seeing Capote the movie, to note that although he has put in so much detail, he purposely left himself out of the book, when he actually got quite close to Perry Smith and played a role in getting the guys good lawyers and such when they were on death row. The only time he hints at himself is when he mentions "a reporter" who made frequent visits to the prisoners.
but nevermind all of that. The book is great.
Great oldie but goodie!! Based on a true story of Murder and Mayhem... Narrator does an excellent job. The story is chocked full of interesting characters. The description provided on this site provides a good snapshot of what this novel is about. Recommend if you are interested in the psychological and mental health background of the killers. The author really develops each of the victims so that you get to know them well and care about them... as well as individuals in the community who are impacted when this prominent family is murdered.
I am squeamish. I don't like horror films and a even Buffy the Vampire Slayer has kept me from sleeping on occasion. I was worried from other reviews that the book might be gory or disgusting and that I wouldn't make it through. Not so. I also worried that the book would drone on, as others had complained. Not for a second. Finally, my biggest worry was that the writing would be poor or the narration bad (side note: ALWAYS listen to the sample read before purchasing an audiobook). No and no.
Scott Brick is masterful. I mean, I don't know where this guy might go for a little recognition, or how he acquired such a skill, but his reading is superb.
Capote's writing is masterful and the language and detail he chose to include are so literarily perfect it is hard to believe that he is relying on quotes and facts. Brilliantly executed. Capote's quotes of the real people put Steinbeck's fictional characters to shame. On this count, the book is a gem in the American cannon.
Finally, there is an beautifully walked line between giving us the details and putting the reader in touch with the the truly horrifying events, without the melodrama and theatrics that most authors can't help but fall into.
This was an audible that after a long draught, got me finding reasons to take the dogs out or go for a long car ride. I was listening first thing in the morning and before I went to sleep (no problems sleeping!). I devoured this and now want to see the movie.
I am a scrooge when it comes to my credits. This one was perhaps the best one I have spent to far.