Truman Capote’s 1966 nonfiction novel In Cold Blood is considered controversial for a number of reasons, among them the pretty disturbing descriptions of violence and questions about Capote’s accurateness in writing the book. Although not one of the most widely challenged books, In Cold Blood is one of the top nonfiction books on the ALA’s list of banned or challenged classics — it’s at 53, right behind The Awakening by Kate Chopin.
To help celebrate Banned Books Week, I decided to participate in a virtual read-out, where people around the world can upload short videos with readings from challenged books. I hope the volume for the video is ok; on my computer it’s really, really quiet!
Interestingly enough, In Cold Blood is still a controversial book. Just this week, a school district in California is debating whether they should add the book to the school’s 11th grade AP English reading list. The book hasn’t been banned, but we won’t know until October whether it will be allowed. I’m curious to see how this plays out, and I’m glad the administrators involved are taking the time to read the book before making a decision.
If you haven’t read In Cold Blood, I definitely recommend it as a great, classic example of narrative nonfiction that is entirely creepy enough for an October read. In fact, I’ll be waxing nostalgic about the book as part of an upcoming guest post for Jenn’s (Jenn’s Bookshelves) “Murder, Monsters & Mayhem” celebration next month!