And Every Word is True
Truman Capote’s bestselling book In Cold Blood has captivated worldwide audiences for over fifty years. It is a gripping story about the consequences of a trivial robbery gone terribly wrong in a remote village of western Kansas.
But what if robbery was not the motive at all, but something more sinister? And why would the Kansas Bureau of Investigation press the Attorney General to launch a ruthless four-year legal battle to prevent fresh details of the State’s most famous crime from being made public, so many years after the case had been solved?
Based on stunning new details discovered in the personal journals and archives of former KBI Director Harold Nye—and corroborated by letters written by Richard Hickock, one of the killers on Death Row—And Every Word Is True (Literati Editions, March 2019) meticulously lays out a vivid and startling new view of the investigation, one that will keep readers on the edge of their seats as they pick up where Capote left off. Even readers new to the story will find themselves drawn into a spellbinding forensic investigation that reads like a thriller, adding new perspectives to the classic tale of an iconic American crime.
“McAvoy, a dealer of collectible manuscripts and other memorabilia, delivers an often captivating addendum to the Clutter family murder case, immortalized in Truman Capote’s ‘In Cold Blood.’ When Ron Nye, the grown son of police investigator Harold Nye, finds a box of his late father’s papers, he contacts McAvoy about selling the material. Beyond his interest in the correspondence between Capote and Nye, McAvoy’s curiosity spikes after the Kansas attorney general demands the papers, claiming them to be the property of the Kansas Bureau of Investigation. Challenges to the veracity of In Cold Blood are in no way new, but McAvoy offers fresh details relating to Capote’s embellishments and omissions, such as leaving out details concerning Bonnie and Herbert Clutter’s marriage and family reputation. McAvoy also explores the possibility that the killers, Richard “Dick” Hickock and Perry Smith, were hired, as suggested in handwritten documents by Hickock. Intriguingly, he also addresses the potential influence of law enforcement on Capote’s work: “a case could be made, then, that ‘In Cold Blood’ was as much a product of the KBI’s guiding hand as it was Capote’s flowing pen.” McAvoy’s disclosures are provocative, if not earthshaking; most notably, McAvoy echoes Capote’s potent prose style and deep humanizing of his subjects, while broadening the conversation about truth, intention, and narrative representation.” — Publishers Weekly/BookLife
“’And Every Word Is True’ kept me absolutely spellbound. In painstaking detail, McAvoy has peeled back the underlying layers of a story we thought we already knew. I couldn’t put it down.” — Micahel Ohoven, CEO of Infinity Media and Oscar-nominated producer of the 2005 film Capote starring Philip Seymour Hoffman
“‘And Every Word is True’ will take you back to that night in Holcomb, Kansas, November of 1959, when two hard-luck men slaughtered an entire family in their farmhouse for a few meager dollars—changing forever our definitions of fear, safety, and how we sleep at night. Now, Gary McAvoy’s scrupulously researched book shines new light on some of the conclusions drawn by the Kansas Bureau of Investigation—and later endorsed by Truman Capote’s classic ‘In Cold Blood.’ McAvoy has done a great job of bringing to life a history that is still alive and still terrifying, and now, perhaps, even richer.” — T Jefferson Parker, Edgar Award-winning author of Silent Joe, California Girl, and The Room of White Fire.