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Authors: Truman Capote

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In Cold Blood (48 page)

BOOK: In Cold Blood
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“Have you forgotten me, Mr. Dewey? Susan Kidwell.”

He laughed; she joined him. “Sue Kidwell. I’ll be darned.” He hadn’t seen her since the trial; she had been a child then. “How are you? How’s your mother?”

“Fine, thank you. She’s still teaching music at the Holcomb School.”

“Haven’t been that way lately. Any changes?”

“Oh, there’s some talk about paving the streets. But you know Holcomb. Actually, I don’t spend much time there. This is my junior year at K.U.,” she said, meaning the University of Kansas. “I’m just home for a few days.”

“That’s wonderful, Sue. What are you studying?”

“Everything. Art, mostly. I love it. I’m really happy.” She glanced across the prairie. “Nancy and I planned to go to college together. We were going to be roommates. I think about it sometimes. Suddenly, when I’m very happy, I think of all the plans we made.”

Dewey looked at the gray stone inscribed with four names, and the date of their death: November 15, 1959. “Do you come here often?”

“Once in a while. Gosh, the sun’s strong.” She covered her eyes with tinted glasses. “Remember Bobby Rupp? He married a beautiful girl.”

“So I heard.”

“Colleen Whitehurst. She’s really beautiful. And very nice, too.”

“Good for Bobby.” And to tease her, Dewey added, “But how about you? You must have a lot of beaus.”

“Well. Nothing serious. But that reminds me. Do you have the time? Oh,” she cried, when he told her it was past four, “I’ve got to run! But it was nice to have seen you, Mr. Dewey.”

“And nice to have seen you, Sue. Good luck,” he called after her as she disappeared down the path, a pretty girl in a hurry, her smooth hair swinging, shining—just such a young woman as Nancy might have been. Then, starting home, he walked toward the trees, and under them, leaving behind him the big sky, the whisper of wind voices in the wind-bent wheat.

BOOKS BY TRUMAN CAPOTE
Other Voices, Other Rooms
A Tree of Night
Local Color
The Grass Harp
The Muses Are Heard
Breakfast at Tiffany’s
Observations
(with Richard Avedon)
Selected Writings
In Cold Blood
A Christmas Memory
The Thanksgiving Visitor
The Dogs Bark
Music for Chameleons
One Christmas
Three by Truman Capote
Answered Prayers: The Unfinished Novel
A Capote Reader
Summer Crossing

ALSO BY TRUMAN CAPOTE
 

ANSWERED PRAYERS

Although Truman Capote’s last novel was unfinished at the time of his death, its surviving portions offer a devastating group portrait of the high and low society of his time. As it follows the career of a writer of uncertain parentage and omnivorous erotic tastes,
Answered Prayers
careens from a louche bar in Tangiers to a banquette at La Côte Basque, from literary salons to high-priced whorehouses. It takes in calculating beauties and sadistic husbands along with such real-life supporting characters as Colette, the Duchess of Windsor, Montgomery Clift, and Tallulah Bankhead. Above all, this malevolently funny book displays Capote at his most relentlessly observant and murderously witty.

Fiction/Literature
BREAKFAST AT TIFFANY’S

In this seductive, wistful masterpiece, Truman Capote created a woman whose name has entered the American idiom and whose style is a part of the literary landscape. Holly Golightly knows that nothing bad can ever happen to you at Tiffany’s; her poignancy, wit, and naïveté continue to charm. This volume also contains three of Capote’s best-known stories, “House of Flowers,” “A Diamond Guitar,” and “A Christmas Memory,” which the
Saturday Review
called “one of the most moving stories in our language.” It is a tale of two innocents—a small boy and the old woman who is his best friend—whose sweetness contains a hard, sharp kernel of truth.

Fiction/Literature
THE COMPLETE STORIES OF TRUMAN CAPOTE

A landmark collection that brings together Truman Capote’s life’s work in the form he called his “great love,”
The Complete Stories
confirms Capote’s status as a master of the short story. This first-ever compendium features a never-before-published 1950 story, “The Bargain,” as well as an introduction by Reynolds Price. Ranging from the gothic South to the chic East Coast, from rural children to aging urban sophisticates, all the unforgettable places and people of Capote’s oeuvre are here, in stories as elegant as they are heartfelt, as haunting as they are compassionate.

Fiction/Literature/Short Stories
THE GRASS HARP

Set on the outskirts of a small Southern town,
The Grass Harp
tells the story of three endearing misfits—an orphaned boy and two whimsical old ladies—who one day take up residence in a tree house. As they pass sweet yet hazardous hours in a china tree,
The Grass Harp
manages to convey all the pleasures and responsibilities of freedom. But most of all it teaches us about the sacredness of love, “that love is a chain of love, as nature is a chain of life.” This volume also includes Capote’s
A Tree of Night and Other Stories
, which the
Washington Post
called “unobtrusively beautiful … a superlative book.”

Fiction/Literature
MUSIC FOR CHAMELEONS

In these gems of reportage Truman Capote takes true stories and real people and renders them with the stylistic brio we expect from great fiction. Here we encounter an exquisitely preserved Creole aristocrat sipping absinthe in her Martinique salon; an enigmatic killer who sends his victims announcements of their forthcoming demise; and a proper Connecticut householder with a ruinous obsession for a twelve-year-old he has never met. And we meet Capote himself, who, whether he is smoking with his cleaning lady or trading sexual gossip with Marilyn Monroe, remains one of the most elegant, malicious, yet compassionate writers to train his eye on the social fauna of his time.

Nonfiction/Literature
OTHER VOICES, OTHER ROOMS

Truman Capote’s first novel is a story of almost supernatural intensity and inventiveness, an audacious foray into the mind of a sensitive boy as he seeks out the grown-up enigmas of love and death in the ghostly landscape of the deep South. At the age of twelve, Joel Knox is summoned to meet the father who abandoned him at birth. But when Joel arrives at the decaying mansion in Skully’s Landing, his father is nowhere in sight. What he finds instead is a sullen stepmother who delights in killing birds; an uncle with the face—and heart—of a debauched child; and a fearsome little girl named Idabel who may offer him the closest thing he has ever known to love.

Fiction/Literature
TOO BRIEF A TREAT
The Letters of Truman Capote
Edited by Gerald Clarke

The private letters of Truman Capote, lovingly assembled here for the first time by acclaimed Capote biographer Gerald Clarke, provide an intimate, unvarnished portrait of one of the twentieth century’s most colorful and fascinating literary figures. Capote was an inveterate letter writer. He wrote letters as he spoke: emphatically, spontaneously, and passionately. Spanning more than four decades, his letters are the closest thing we have to a Capote autobiography, showing us the uncannily self-possessed naïf who jumped headlong into the post–World War II New York literary scene; the more mature Capote of the 1950s; the Capote of the early 1960s, immersed in the research and writing of
In Cold Blood
; and Capote later in life, as things seem to be unraveling. With cameos by a veritable who’s who of twentieth-century glitterati,
Too Brief a Treat
shines a spotlight on the life and times of an incomparable American writer.

Biography/Letters
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