Book Review: Capote in Kansas

imageWritten by: Ande Parks
Art by: Chris Samnee
Publisher: Oni Press
Genre: Drama
Release Date: July 200

I had met Ande Parks briefly at Planet Comicon 2015 when I bought a copy of Straight Shooter.  Ande and Phil Hester were both there and were gracious enough to sign my copy.  I had been watching, and cosplaying as, Arrow and wanted to get more into the comic side of Green Arrow’s mythos, so I was very excited to see Parks & Hester would be at PCC ’15.

Shortly thereafter I had learned of Parks’ involvement with Capote in Kansas, it might have been while reading about his other upcoming Comic Con appearancesbut once I learned about it I purchased it right away.  Several years prior I had seen Capote and In Cold Blood and, for whatever reason, the story of both what happened that fateful night in Holcomb, Kansas and Truman’s time researching for his book fascinated me, as it has fascinated so many others.  So I knew this would be right up my alley.

First of all, I LOVE the art.  Chris Samnee’s black and white work bounces right off the page, in all it’s stylized glory.

Parks does an excellent job of bringing us into the world of this outsider, Truman Capote, a southerner now living in New York, trying to get to the heart of this small Kansas community, one that is almost in complete contrast to everything he his.  Parks spends little time on the crime, which is appreciated, anyone delving into Capote in Kansas is probably well aware of the details, which have been covered in Capote’s book In Cold Blood and the movies I mentioned previously.  If you are unfamiliar with the murders, I would suggest doing so before reading Capote In Kansas.

Instead we delve into the life of Capote as a child, into the happenings in Kansas, as the townspeople warm up to Capote, his relationship with Perry Smith, Capote’s own friends and family and a fictionalized reality where one of the murder victim’s ghosts appears to Capote.  A lot of these details I have never seen covered in the movies I have seen, so it’s great to see a different side of the story.

The printing I have also includes many extras written by Ande which detail his research and guidelines for working in fictional happenings into a true story.  This was equally as fascinating as the book itself and actually cleared up some questions I had.

All in all I thoroughly enjoyed Capote in Kansas, blazing through it much faster than I do most anything else I read.  I enjoyed it so much, that I have fast-tracked Union Station, another true story Parks penned for Oni Press, to the top of my read list.  If you enjoy history, true crime or period drama, you will enjoy Capote in Kansas.

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