SELECTED WRITINGS OF TRUMAN CAPOTE

Surprisingly enough, these Truman Capote writings cover 20 years; one would not have thought he'd been at bat that long. Not too surprisingly, they don't all hold up; but, generally, it must be said he scores more often than he strikes out. Certainly his talents are manifold: the quicksilver dialogue, the damning details, the mot juste, the psychologically perceptive blue mood or set. His influences abound, yet he remains an original, from the early Southern Gothic tales with auras of Williams, Faulkner, McGullers and, in that famous shocker Miriam, of Alfred Hitchcock, onwards through Breakfast at Tiffany's and its jazzed-up Christopher Isherwood type heroine, Holly Golightly, plus the New Yorkerish reportage of Porgy and Bess' Russian tour, of Marlon Brando, of travelogues via Ischia, New Orleans, Spain. All and more are here collected; most good, most entertaining. But is he a major writer? No, not by these samplings anyway. Is he even the sure stylist such a tough minded person as Norman Mailer takes him to be? No, not if we compare him to a newcomer like Updike, an oldster like Miss Porter. But he is an exquisitely exotic bloom on our all too exoteric literary landscape, full of variety, full of change. Given a few more imaginistic flights in as many years, he might yet emerge the American Coeteau. Not an unrewarding prospect at all.

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 1963

ISBN: 0394604954

Page Count: 460

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: Oct. 10, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 1962

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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IN MY PLACE

From the national correspondent for PBS's MacNeil-Lehrer Newshour: a moving memoir of her youth in the Deep South and her role in desegregating the Univ. of Georgia. The eldest daughter of an army chaplain, Hunter-Gault was born in what she calls the ``first of many places that I would call `my place' ''—the small village of Due West, tucked away in a remote little corner of South Carolina. While her father served in Korea, Hunter-Gault and her mother moved first to Covington, Georgia, and then to Atlanta. In ``L.A.'' (lovely Atlanta), surrounded by her loving family and a close-knit black community, the author enjoyed a happy childhood participating in activities at church and at school, where her intellectual and leadership abilities soon were noticed by both faculty and peers. In high school, Hunter-Gault found herself studying the ``comic-strip character Brenda Starr as I might have studied a journalism textbook, had there been one.'' Determined to be a journalist, she applied to several colleges—all outside of Georgia, for ``to discourage the possibility that a black student would even think of applying to one of those white schools, the state provided money for black students'' to study out of state. Accepted at Michigan's Wayne State, the author was encouraged by local civil-rights leaders to apply, along with another classmate, to the Univ. of Georgia as well. Her application became a test of changing racial attitudes, as well as of the growing strength of the civil-rights movement in the South, and Gault became a national figure as she braved an onslaught of hostilities and harassment to become the first black woman to attend the university. A remarkably generous, fair-minded account of overcoming some of the biggest, and most intractable, obstacles ever deployed by southern racists. (Photographs—not seen.)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 1992

ISBN: 0-374-17563-2

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1992

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