Truman Capote’s non-fiction novel, In Cold Blood, was a breakthrough in literacy in that it was accredited as the first non-fiction novel. There was a lot of controversy when the book was first published because of the incredibility of the work. This could be expected in that time, because people where not familiar with the concept of non-fiction novels yet, but this is where the beauty of this style of writing lies, the recreation of the truth. It would have been impossible for Capote to have documented the occurrence fully, because he only read about the murder after it had happen, after all, this was not what he wanted to do. Capote got a lot of criticism for the book, because of him bending the truth, putting in scenes that never happened and his ways of gathering information, but people still saw the talent that went into creating the non-fiction novel. Truman Capote will forever be recognized for this novel and the contribution he made to literacy. In this essay we will be discussing the strengths and weaknesses of In Cold Blood when it delivers facts and the credibility of the work. We will also be discussing the strengths and weaknesses of the novel when Capote bends reality and ad some parts of fiction.
Capote never intended for In Cold Blood to be a documentary of the multiple murder that happened in the small town of Holcomb. When Capote published his novel, people where not familiar with non-fiction novels. People knew of the murders that had happened and started criticizing the book for not being truthful to what had really happened. This novel can not be looked at as journalism, which is often the mistake people made and still make today. Although there are many facts within the novel, the story that is being told is not always credible. Capote has also been criticized for his method of gathering information, because he did not take notes or record his interviews. Capote said that he had tested himself and that he had a 95% memory recall, but this
Bibliography: Jensen, V. “Writing History: Capote’s Novel has lasting Effect on Journalism”
In LJ World.com, Archive for Sunday, April 3 2005.
Capote, Truman. In Cold Blood. London: Penguin Books