A Bridge of Childhood: Truman Capote's Southern Years

Marianne M. Moates, Author Henry Holt & Company $19.95 (240p) ISBN 978-0-8050-0971-2
The young Truman Capote who emerges from these amusing recollections by his first cousin, Jennings Faulk Carter, and freelance writer Moates is quick-witted, scheming, mercurial, a born leader in the mischievous escapades of a trio that included their tomboyish next-door neighbor Harper (``Nellie'') Lee, who later wrote To Kill a Mockingbird . Capote, abandoned by his mother to the care of relatives in Monroeville, Ala., as a small boy, found a maternal substitute in Carter's mother Mary Ida. Redolent with down-home flavor, these modest yet revealing tales deal with such matters as a fight with the town bully, bootlegging by Capote's father, exhuming a skeleton from a graveyard and a beach outing. Carter contends that relatives and friends alike failed Capote by not providing love and understanding. In her extensive introduction, Moates offers a contrasting view, asserting that Capote adapted to the role of family oddball. Photos. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 10/01/1989
Release date: 10/01/1989
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