Truman Capote and Perry

Powerful Essays
In Cold Blood
Close Reading and Analysis Questions
“The Last to See Them Alive”
1. How does Capote build suspense even though the reader knows the ultimate outcome from the beginning? Pg. 62 Capote builds suspense by letting us know that the Clutter’s were murdered, but he doesn’t give us all of the details from the killer’s point of view until the very end.
2. What are some details Capote provides to describe the town of Holcomb, Kansas. Pg. 3-5 The author describes Holcomb being on the “high wheat plains of western Kansas, a lonesome area that other Kansans call ‘out there’”. There’s “not much to see” with it’s prairie lands, and wheat fields. It’s a friendly town, quiet- unless there’s gossip to be heard.
3. Who is Alvin Dewey? Pg.80 Alvin Dewey was one of the main detectives working on the case.
4. Capote carefully depicts the personalities of secondary characters such as Alvin Dewey and Bobby Rupp. Why does he do this? What is the significance of these secondary characters? Capote goes into detail of the secondary characters to let you know more about them. I think that’s his way of introducing all of the characters in the story. The significance of doing this is to let you feel like you know the characters personally.
5. What were the only “serious clues” that were found at the crime scene? Pg. 83 & 65 The only serious clues were the foot print on the cardboard, and the Kenyon’s missing radio.
6. Who was their primary suspect at the beginning? Why? What would have been the motive? Pg 84 Bobby Rupp was their first suspect because he was the last to see the Clutter’s, the night of their murder. His motive would have been that Mr. Clutter had wanted Nancy to slowly break off their relationship.
7. Who did Perry Smith consider his “real and only friend”? Pg 124 Willie Jay was Perry’s only friend because he understood him and no one else did.
8. Describe Perry’s recurring dream. Pg 92 In his dreams, he is always in some kind of trouble and

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