#27: In Cold Blood by Truman Capote
Have you ever had the kind of epiphany that goes something along the lines of, “So that’s what all the fuss was about”? Well, that’s what just happened to me. I should have read this years ago, but for some reason it just slipped by. It’s an especially troubling book and it has a wealth of history surrounding insanity pleas, capital punishment, and life in the midwest. But here’s the thing about In Cold Blood: it’s one thing to read about murder, it’s another to see what the people actually looked like. True crime stories are haunting and to take it a step further, it’s almost impossible not to use Wikipedia for more information regarding the supposed truth. As for a summary of the book, Truman Capote writes about two men (Dick Hickock and Perry Smith) who murder two thirds of the Clutter Family. The Clutters were prominent Kansas farmers and as is stated in the book, no one in their community would have fathomed such harsh deaths. I’m not giving much away by telling you that the killers are caught and eventually hanged, for the book is not only about plot, but the capabilities of human beings. And for the record, I just added Capote to the top of my Netflix queue.
Random factoid: The hangman used for the Smith and Hickock’s execution was paid $600 to do the job. I can’t figure out why this is so disturbing.