May 10, 2014

In Cold Blood, second chapter

In the second chapter the crime has already happened and Capote presents us the community trying to live through it, describing how the drama has affected the families in Holcomb.
We are introduced to Dewey and his desperate need to solve the crime. Also, we get to know the whereabouts of Dick and Perry after the murders, as well as some of Perry's past and life story.
For me (Macarena), too many questions are raised here. 
Why does Capote present so much information about Perry? How do you see the character? How do you feel about the crime and the criminals as the story advances? Can you think at this point of a motive for the murders?

May 8, 2014

In Cold Blood (with spoilers), by J

Hi Cookies,

It seems that I have been the first one to finish the book this time!I have pretty much enjoyed the book, although I will probably never again pick someone on the road or leave a door not locked in the night.

I have been hooked since the beginning as the book is very well written and interesting (being a real case makes it even more addictive). Even if we know how it ends, you continue reading, willing to widen your view of this case, maybe trying to understand why.

I think that Capote has made an amazing book by drawing a straight timeline and somehow sticking to it throughout the story.

The introduction of the characters is clear, clean, you can almost feel that you have met the nice and friendly Clutter family and that they are your friends just by the everday life the author describes of their last 24 hours. The life of this nice people,we do not know why, is crossed, erased, by these two guys that are also starting to be described in our story. But we also learn about an specific time, society, customs in the midwest of the USA.
Then it happens, even if we do not have the details, it terribly happens and we knew it was going to happen... We have to wait for the details, and that is the morbidness that make us continue hooked with the book...

And then we travel with Perry and Hickock from the US to Mexico, from that fatidic date November 14th 1959, to their childhood, their fears, their families, their problems. We can feel sometimes sorrow for them, quite often we are disgusted by their behaviour, but always we can feel that, after all, they are derailed human beings, each of them with his particularities.

Then we read about this KBI agent Dewey, how he works, how he manages his anguish, how he investigates and does accusse some people before going to nowhere. How he reads and rereads the diary, uses the information available, gets frustrated... And how he with his team finally find them in Las Vegas.

Then comes one of the most incredible parts of the book: the confession, and the details too. I find this part of the story amazing, how they start to have the same allibi and how easily the police make Perry confess everything in the car. How can a human being confess such crime like he did? Without remorse, as someone that is talking about a football match... I find it unbelievably scary...

But the book is far from finished, we learn then about the trial, how they are well treated while in prison, the witnesses testimonies, their psicological profiles. We even feel that they might escape their fate and be declared not guilty because of who knows what kind of legal trick.

And then, as in the rest of the book, everything continues as it was expected: they are condemned to the death penalty, and we can see how they are going to share the death row with other incredibly sinister characters, that have killed plenty of innocent people (even his family in the case of Lowell Andrews), apparently without remorse, in cold blood. They come from very different backgrounds, educated, lonely, from rich or poor families.... No stereotypes can be applied to all of them. I think this is the crudest, most astonishing part of the book; the description of all these murders carried out by those people that, some of them, could be your neighbor or your classmate.

And then Hickock decides to fight back, to write letters, to have a revision of the trial, and time passes by, and again, when we start to think about that they might be going to be lucky, about the  possibility of, one day, finding these guys out there in the street... But the story continues as it is, no surprises, six years after their crime, they are hanged. But again it is incredibly easy, apparently normal, almost an everyday activity, how they behave just minutes before and how they die.

I find that this book is an amazingly clear radiography of psicology profiles, of small groups interaction, of society, of legal system, of the enforcement of law. But above all it is the harshest book I have read about death, how extremely easy is to kill or to die, how close anybody can be to his killers without even knowing it, how instantly the life of a person or a even family can be wiped out without a real reason or just because a misunderstanding or incorrect information (there was no safe in the Clutters' place!).

This book is very good, sometimes it has description that I find too baroque, but in general it greatly written. It's a pity that we have not many more books from you Mr. Capote.

May 2, 2014

In Cold Blood, first chapter

Hello readers! How is Capote going? For those reading about vampires, please note that there was a mixing among titles, but we are reading Truman Capote, maybe vampires for the next one...
So, for all that I know, I'm the one really behind this time, as I'm not reading THE BOOK.
And why is that? I mean, shame on me, but, I have some sort of excuse, I read "In Cold Blood" a few years ago... so I felt that I would read something else in the meanwhile... and I'm reading a bizarre African novel, difficult to read even in my native in Spanish...
So I would ask for your help in leading this conversation, I don't have all the details in my memory, so what should be discussing here? Take the lead!