In Cold Blood (book)  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

In Cold Blood is a 1965 book by American author Truman Capote.

It details the 1959 slaying of Herbert Clutter, a wealthy farmer from Holcomb, Kansas, his wife, and two children. When Capote learned of the quadruple murders before the killers were captured, he decided to travel to Kansas and write about the crime. Bringing his childhood friend and fellow author Harper Lee (To Kill a Mockingbird) along, together they interviewed local residents and investigators assigned to the case and took thousands of pages of notes. The killers, Richard "Dick" Hickock and Perry Smith, were arrested not long after the murders, and Capote ultimately spent six years working on the book. It is considered the originator of the non-fiction novel and the forerunner of the New Journalism movement.

The story weaves a complicated psychological story of two parolees who together commit a mass murder, an act they were not capable of individually. Capote's book also details the lives of the victims and the effect the crime had on where they lived. A large part of the story involves the dynamic psychological relationship of the two felons that culminated in this senseless crime. In Cold Blood is often regarded as a pioneering work of true crime.


Tom Wolfe wrote in his essay "Pornoviolence", "The book is neither a who-done-it nor a will-they-be-caught, since the answers to both questions are known from the outset ... Instead, the book's suspense is based largely on a totally new idea in detective stories: the promise of gory details, and the withholding of them until the end."--Wolfe, Tom: "Mauve Gloves & Madmen, Clutter & Vine", pages 163-164. Picador, 1990.

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "In Cold Blood (book)" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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