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Monday, February 25, 2019

Other Voices, Other Rooms

I've never felt so captivated by a book as I did with this one.

Joel Knox is going to live with his absentee father after his mother falls ill and passes. Moving all the way from New Orleans to rural Alabama takes some getting used to, but everyone acts so different. For many days, Joel doesn't even get to meet his father because he "isn't well" but no one will tell him much else. Living alongside Joel and his father is his wife, Miss Amy, Cousin Randolph, and out in the cabin are Jesus Fever and Missouri (Zoo for short). Zoo and Joel strike up an unlikely friendship that Miss Amy and Randolph don't quite understand. They see Jesus Fever and Missouri as "the help." Keep in mind it is 1948 in Alabama...
 Along the way, Joel meets red-headed twins Idabel and Florabel Thompkins. Idabel was hot-headed and had no issues speaking her mind and standing up for what she believed in. She didn't need a dress to catch Joel's eye, just her sharp tongue and a will for adventure. 

Truman Capote tackles a wide variety of societal norms in Other Voice, Other Rooms. Death, alienation, slavery, sexuality, and friendship. This could definitely be considered a coming of age story given that Joel is a mere 13 years.

Since it's initial release, Truman Capote has come out and said this is a semi-autobiographical story, though he didn't realize it at the time of writing. Many characters are based on friends and family. Most famously, Idabel Thompkins is based on his good friend, Harper Lee.

Truman Capote is an icon to me.

I grew up in Alabama just a few hours from Monroeville. So Truman Capote and Harper Lee are a huge part of our literary scene and I absolutely love it.

Looking for other books by Truman Capote?
In Cold Blood

Looking for other books about Truman Capote and Harper Lee?
Tru & Nelle (Tru & Nelle #1)
Tru & Nelle: A Christmas Tale (Tru & Nelle #2)
No Saints in Kansas

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