Book Review: In Cold Blood by Truman Capote

“You live until you die, and it doesn’t matter how you go; dead’s dead.”

Truman Capote, In Cold Blood

Title: In Cold Blood
Author: Truman Capote
Genres: Non-fiction, True Crime, Classics, History
Pages: 343 (Paperback)
Published: 1965

My Rating: ★★★
Read: 12/2/2022 – 12/4/2022


Before reading, I paid minimal attention to what this book was about. I was halfway through before I realized this is in the true crime genre and not a crime novel. I jumped right into it. Had I realized right away I might have taken it in differently.

In 1959, four members of the Clutter family are murdered in their small-town Kansas home. A well-liked family, their deaths shook the town, and no one was able to figure out a reason as to why. Looking at the background of the Clutters as well as their murderers, we’re taken through each movement of the capture and trial. 

Not surprisingly, the writing is fantastic. The biggest issue for me was how slow it was. It picked up in the second half, but by then my interest had dwindled. I’m glad to have read it, though. Again, I might have appreciated the pace more if I’d realized off the bat that this was a work of nonfiction. It’s interesting to see how much true crime books have evolved since the time of this book’s publication.

Likes & Dislikes:

What I liked:

  • There was respect on all sides.
  • Thorough research.
  • It was written in the style of a novel.

What I didn’t like:

  • Though I did like how thorough it was, it was also dragged out. There were some details that could have been omitted.
  • Lots of jumping around.


Truman Capote was an interesting man. There’s a depth to his writing that evokes a lot of emotion and empathy. His understanding of the human condition was his greatest attribute.

Where to buy the book:

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