“It is no shame to have a dirty face- the shame comes when you keep it dirty": First Edition of Truman Capote's Classic In Cold Blood; Inscribed by Truman Capote to Johnny Carson

  • In Cold Blood.

In Cold Blood.

Item Number: 87126

New York: Random House, 1965.

First edition of Capote’s landmark true-crime novel. Octavo, original cloth. Presentation copy, inscribed by the author, “For Johnny with love Truman.” The recipient, Johnny Carson, interviewed Capote several times on his evening program, The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson. Johnny Carson’s Tonight Show established the format of the modern late-night talk show: a monologue sprinkled with one-liners, followed by guest interviews and performances. Carson preferred interviewing actors, authors, and stage performers to politicians, and the show soon moved from New York City to Burbank, California in 1972 where guests included Burt Reynolds, Steve Martin, George Carlin, Peter Fonda, and Truman Capote. Fine in a very good dust jacket with some rubbing and wear. Jacket design by S. Neil Fujita. An exceptional association copy.




"Until one morning in mid-November of 1959, few Americans--in fact, few Kansans--had ever heard of Holcomb. Like the waters of the river, like the motorists on the highway, and like the yellow trains streaking down the Santa Fe tracks, drama, in the shape of exceptional happenings, had never stopped there." If all Truman Capote did was invent a new genre--journalism written with the language and structure of literature--this "nonfiction novel" about the brutal slaying of the Clutter family by two would-be robbers would be remembered as a trail-blazing experiment that has influenced countless writers. But Capote achieved more than that. He wrote a true masterpiece of creative nonfiction. In Cold Blood established Capote as the "herald of a new genre, ‘the non-fiction novel,’ which recognizes the convergence of fiction and fact in times of outrage, the insane surrealism of daily life" (Hart, 122; Allen, 247). "The best documentary account of an American crime ever written. . . . The book chills the blood and exercises the intelligence . . . harrowing" (The New York Review of Books). It was adapted into a film of the same name 1967 and again in 2005 as the biographical portrait, Capote, starring Philip Seymour Hoffman, who won the Academy Award for Best Actor for his outstanding performance. Listed by Modern Library as one of the greatest English-language nonfiction books of the 20th century.