Written By: Truman Capote

Narrated By: Scott Brick

Date: January 2006

Duration: 14 hours 27 minutes


NATIONAL BESTSELLER • The most famous true crime novel of all time 'chills the blood and exercises the intelligence' (The New York Review of Books)—and haunted its author long after he finished writing it.

On November 15, 1959, in the small town of Holcomb, Kansas, four members of the Clutter family were savagely murdered by blasts from a shotgun held a few inches from their faces. There was no apparent motive for the crime, and there were almost no clues. 

In one of the first non-fiction novels ever written, Truman Capote reconstructs the murder and the investigation that led to the capture, trial, and execution of the killers, generating both mesmerizing suspense and astonishing empathy. In Cold Blood is a work that transcends its moment, yielding poignant insights into the nature of American violence.


  • Andrew G.

    I really wanted to like it but it's boring. I don't know maybe it's just me but I could literally not give two shits about the perpetrators. Yeah it's written well blah blah blah.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful.

  • Leon Skrivanek

    Story was well done but the reader made it to where I wanted to quit listening. Arlo Guthrie meets Forrest Gump.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful.

  • Sandra Ann Birch

    I feel a little guilty in enjoying this book because it tells the slaughter of an innocent family but what an amazing read, to get to know the characters and the world that they lived in, a different time but maybe a more honest time. The narrator Scott Brick was a joy to listen to. I highly recommend this book, one of the best that I have listened to for a long time.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • Ayanna M

    He reads to slow and the book is boring . I would not recommend this book to anyone

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • Toxic

    Absolute must read classic-THE blueprint for true crime stories

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • Robert

    Had a great time listening to this book. It was well written and the narrator was awesome. Overall fantastic audio book

  • LoriAnn H.

    Gripping from begin to end.

  • Anonymous

    Very tastefully done for true crime.

  • Anonymous

    Beautifully written. A superb insight.

  • Anonymous

  • Michael H.

    The depravity of human behavior lies just below the surface of social interaction.

  • Anonymous

    Great story telling and great story in general

  • natalie koch

    I continue to be amazed just how many times my mind drifts back to elements of this book, even though it's been about three months since I finished it. It's disturbing yet mesmerizing all the same. A true classic.

  • Anonymous

    Great book. All you expect and a little more. I was surprised by the exquisite writing style and descriptive qualities. Capote paints a picture so well. You know this town, you know this family, and you know these villains. This book lets go of you slowly and lingers.

  • Nick Hardy

    Excellent story captivating , kept me intrigued from the first words read . Really enjoyed the narrator's tone

  • Deanna Ball

    Loved Truman Capote's writing style and language. I decided it was time to "read" this book after watching "Capote". I avoided it in the past, fearing it was too gruesome and awful. I think the writing was exceptional.

  • Martha Stephens

    There is a reason this book remains captivating 50 years later. In an age where we are desensitized to violence, this book managed to rattle me and seep into my dreams. Capote's lyrical descriptions and the way he weaves the stories of the family, the convicts, and the law is intoxicating. A must read!

  • Anonymous

    I have read this book several times and I wanted to read it again... a classic, unflinching look at a horrible crime and the men that committed it. Classic

  • Laurie711

    As I read this book, I visualized each scene in black and white, the way the original movie was filmed. This some how made what I visualized more ghastly than if it had been in full color. This is not a book for everyone. In some ways it's a very dry almost sparse read. You can't quite get enough to quench your thirst. Based on the crime I expected some gruesome, bloody scenes, but they weren't in the book, but I wasn't disappointed. It is the black and white and dryness of the book that makes it such a great read. Definitely on my list of 10 best books... at least for now.

  • Betsy

    This was a great story that pulled me right into the middle of the lives of everyone involved. The narrator was excellent in his portrayal of each character. I'd recommend this book!

  • Anonymous

    Truman Capote was truly at his best with this novel...I felt that the characters were my neighbors and friends. I had a hard time putting the book down, and at the end wanted more

  • Anonymous

    This was a very good book. Kept me interested.Would recomend this book to others.

  • Derek Dean

    The style in which this book is written is fantastic. There is a reason this book has remained famous for so long. And after Capote wrote it, fella threw in the towel. Probably realized it could only be down hill. Or, he had a terrible drinking problem....either way. Good book.

  • BClemens

    Book droned on. Reader did not help. Did not like the writers style.

  • Michael Scott

    This is the first "Non-Fiction Novel" I've ever read, as well as the first book by Capote I've read. I'll have to keep my eye out for other works of his. I was more impressed with this work than I expected to be. Even though I knew the story, I was gripped by this tale. The Narrator was impressive.... Even though this was 12 CD's long, I was still dismayed when it was over.

  • Anonymous

    This book was phonomenal!! Truman Capote is a wonderful writer who kept every part of the story interesting. I didn't not want to stop listening from beginning to end.

  • Norrine Sims

    Excellently narrated. This book is surprisingly suspenseful, given that we know the ending. A great listen.

  • Patricia Blumberg

    Yes, the book is heavy on detail---but the beauty of the writing itself is spell binding--You come away knowing each person involved, ---victims, criminals and investigators as though they were from your community. You feel the tragedy--you feel everything everyone did in this senseless event.

  • Regan Waler

    I enjoyed this book quite a bit, but I did feel at times like the author dragged the story on forever when it was not necessary. There were several times when I wondered when we would be getting to the point. Knowing that it is based on a true story helps explain why the author had such a hard time editing, but doesn't make it go any faster for the listener. I enjoyed it, but would suggest you make sure you are in a patient mood when you pop it in the CD player.

  • Wanda Taylor

    What a wonderful "read". Mr. Capote captured the blandness of Kansas with the absolute blood red fear of murder. This book proves that truth is stranger than fiction. This time art imitates life. The narrator has a wonderful pitch & timber.

  • Kathleen Ross

    This was painfully slow and wordy. I forced myself to get through half and then threw in the towel. I like Truman Capote and was very interested in reading perhaps his most book and the story that became his obsession. But I think that perhaps this was new material when he wrote it, which it explains its success. I think in this age of CSI and similar movies and television, this goes over very old ground and characters that are nothing new at all.

  • Anonymous

    I agree the writing is fabulous and it is well done. However, the detail this author goes into is a bit much, which is unfortunate because I rarely lose patience with a book. But, this one I did. It took two hours of story to go absolutely NO WHERE. By the end of the second CD we were still listening to descriptions and background information. I had enough and sent it back. If you really like heavy detail, this is your book. If you want to be entertained, and sooner, rather than later, don't hold your breath with this one.

  • Janice Church

    Spell binding, rich development of the two criminal characters and the victims. One of the two best books I have "read".

  • Teresa of San Antonio

    This book was okay. A little long winded and descriptive in parts. It had a DIFFERENT kind of story telling almost like an autobiography of the main characters. I believe it's written with the intent to give the listener an insight into the psychological twisted/warped reasoning ability found within the mind of a killer. If that is so, then it was done well. But, I can definitely see that this book could fall into the rating-catagory of "some will like it and others won't".

  • Anonymous

    I loved this book. It was so well written and the only time I ever felt it got wordy was towards the end when he would explaine in detail the lagistics of the legal process. He also seemed to wander off onto someone else's story a little describing other cell mates but that didnt last long. I definately felt for the family and the town and what they went through rather then the main characters as the story moved along. A must read!

  • Liz

    This book was really good. I was entertained until the very end.

  • Keetah

    Wow, what a great writer!!!! This was my first book by Truman Capote, and I was really impressed. He is truly a master wordsmith! Although the topic is a bit grim, one cannot help but be amazed at the depth and detail provided in this book. This is truly a masterpiece! A solid 5-star book, must-read!

  • Amy Hoskins

    As I child, my Father instilled in me the virture of finishinf what I had started. Had it not been for this training, I would have given up on this book after about the first 3 or 4 discs. I kept waiting for it to get interesting - after all, this is Truman Capote we're talking about. At one point my CD player finished the CD but started playing it from the beinning agian - it was probably about 1/2 hour before I realized this wasn't just Capote's repetitive style. Well, the emporer has no clothes. This book is tedium at it's finest. Capote - very verbose, why use two words when 9 will do nicely and how much detail can you pack into novel? (why didn't he tell us what color thier toothbrushes were) Wow - that's it for Capote for me!!!!!!!!!!

  • Victorine Merriman

    I avoided reading this book for many years, as I thought the subject was too creepy. After reading one other Capote book, I decided to try In Cold Blood, as I realized what a terrific author he was. I was not disappointed. And, while indeed, the subject is creepy, the writing is evocative, drawing you in to each person fully. A wonderful study on human nature.

  • Anonymous

    A great listen. Not exactly uplifting, but very insightful into the criminal mind, and an interesting slice of middle America in the 1950's & early 1960's. Well written and well read.

  • Anonymous

    After seeing the movie Capote, I thought I would hate this book. I expected a flowery, literary style from Capote, but found his writing to be down-to-earth. It was not overflowing with description, but rather drew the listener into the lives of all involved in the tragic deaths of the Clutters. The reader did an excellent job at delineating the different characters without overdoing the accents. I highly recommend this audiobook.

  • Anonymous

    What a masterpiece of a story. It was great to listen to this book and then go watch "Capote", the movie. As a person raised in Kansas, though, I was a little dismayed at the narrator's use of a Southern accent for the rural Kansans in the story. Real Kansans do not speak like Southerners and have more of a "Midwest twang" than a "Southern drawl".

  • Doc

    Capote's In Cold Blood is a masterpiece. The language, the style, the gripping nature of the work is remarkable. I fancy myself as a writer on occasion, but after I started listening to this I recognized the difference between little league and MLB. Capote is MLB. I am not a murder-mystery type of guy and the overview of the plot did not interest me. It is the pure power and perfection of Capote's masterpiece that keeps me captivated. The unabridged audio version is around 15 hours and it is something you just can't put down. If you decide to listen in your car, you are going to be wasting a lot of gas because you will not want to park the car. If you want to be amazed by a skillfully crafted novel which is largely nonfiction, give Capote's In Cold Blood a spin. Then tell me if it knocked you off your feet as it did me.

  • Kristy

    I had a hard time following the CD, but I hung in there. I'm glad I did. It is a thorough review of a true murder in a small town. I enjoyed the extensive background on the murderers- you always wonder why some people are so jacked up!- but I'm not done yet it is about 100 CDs long.

  • Andrew S.

    With all the Truman/Capote hype, I gave this a listen and didn't care for it at all. All the empathy goes to the "bad guys", while all the "good guys" get the "American Gothic" sterotypical portrayal.

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by Truman Capote

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