Friday, January 02, 2015

Breakfast at Tiffany's : Truman Capote

Breakfast at Tiffany's
By Truman Capote

I've seen the film, Breakfast at Tiffany's, multiple times and overall, except for the ending, the film does a pretty good job at capturing the tone of and the personalities of the protagonists in this breezy short novel.

Capote's writing is phenomenal.  What is really eye-catching is Capote's imagery. For example:
  Holly was alone. She answered the door at once; in fact, she was on her way out - white satin dancing pumps and quantities of perfume announced gala intentions. "Well, idiot," she said, and playfully slapped me with her purse. "I'm in too much of a hurry to make up now. We'll smoke the pipe tomorrow, okay?"
  "Sure, Lulamae. If you're still around tomorrow."
  She took off her dark glasses and squinted at me. It was as though her eyes were shattered prisms, the dots of blue and gray and green like broken bits of sparkle. "He told you that," she said in a small, shivering voice. "Oh, please. Where is he?" She ran past me into the hall. "Fred!" she called down the stairs. "Fred! Where are you, darling?"
And I'm amazed at his knack for conveying personalities, moods and little moments in such few words:
I didn't trust my voice to tell the news;as soon as she came to the door, her eyes squinty with sleep, I thrust the letter at her. It seemed as though she'd had time to read sixty pages before she handed it back. "I wouldn't let them do it, not if they don't pay you," she said, yawning. Perhaps my face explained she'd misconstrued, that I'd not wanted advice but congratulations: her mouth shifted from a yawn into a smile. "Oh, I see. It's wonderful. Well, come in," she said. "We'll make a pot of coffee and celebrate. No. I'll get dressed and take you to lunch."
The other short stories are also worthwhile reading as well, all of which tell stories of love and friendship with equally detailed characters, imagery and emotional hooks, particularly A Christmas Memory. 

I'm embarrassed to say that this is the first time I've read Capote, but I'll definitely be picking up more of his works.