Author – Truman Capote
Year – 1958
Genre – Fiction
One of the problems with The Book Challenge is that through necessity you rattle through an incredible number of books in a short period of time, meaning that every few days or so you have to bridge that slightly awkward gap of beginning a new book. That strange feeling whereby you don’t yet know the characters or the world that the novel is set in. You don’t understand the quirks of the writer, and don’t yet know if this will be a story that is your cup of tea. In my ‘to be read’ pile, I currently have around ten books that I have opened, read the first five or six pages, and then decided I couldn’t get into at that time, so they have gone back on the pile for another day.
It is therefore wonderful to start a book such as Breakfast at Tiffany’s which hooks you immidantly. If just by the sheer force of writing, I found myself fully entranced by this book by the time I reached page two. And from there on it continues to be a massively charming book, with amazing characters.
Descriptions of the characters, such as the ‘Amazon’ Mag Wildwood, and the ‘oversized baby’ Rusty Trawler are fantastic, but it is the awesome force of the iconic Holly Golightly which not only makes this book the triumph it is, but also turns it from a potentially pretty standard New York novel to a true character piece.
From the visual description of her, through to the subtle nuances of her speech, the reader gets a real sense of what it is like to be around Holly. She is a whirlwind of enigma, who everyone falls in love with as soon as they meet her, and it is not hard to understand why just reading along.
Capote was apparently very unhappy with the film version of Breakfast at Tiffany’s saying that it was far too tamed down in comparisson to the book. To my shame, I haven’t seen the film, but it made an icon of Audrey Hepburn. If it is half as good as the book, then it is certainly worth a look. In the meantime – find this book and read it.