Authors discuss books at Mabee

Louis Bordeau, Washburn Review

There will be a book talk at 4 p.m. Monday, Oct. 29 on the main floor of the Mabee Library.  The book talk will discuss the books “Truman Capote and the Legacy of In Cold Blood” by Ralph Voss, a retired English Professor from the University of Alabama and “Beyond In Cold Blood” by Larry Welch, former director of the Kansas Bureau of Investigation.

“They will talk about their books, and put our signed book in the context of the KBI and Capote, then they will sign copies available at the gathering,” said Tom Averill, English professor.

The English department hosts many book talks for students, faculty, staff and the community to meet many different authors from Kansas and around the world.

“Larry Welch, former director of the KBI, wrote ‘Beyond In Cold Blood,’ a history of the agency and it has a chapter on the Clutter case,” said Averill.  “Ralph Voss, a retired English Professor from the University of Alabama, is more interested in Capote’s time in Kansas, his writing of the book and the legacy of the book in Kansas, hence his title, Truman Capote and the Legacy of In Cold Blood.”

“In Cold Blood” can be considered a very well known book about the gruesome murders of the Herb Clutter family of Holcomb, Kan. in the early twentieth century. Both of these author’s books examine  the case which is appropriate since Mabee Library has received the donation of a first edition copy of “In Cold Blood” signed by many KBI agents, as well as Capote.

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“They both have recent books about the Clutter case and Truman Capote, and they seem the best qualified to put our gift book in context” said Averill.

Learning about the book In Cold Blood will be beneficial to students because of the local history and these two authors will allow students to learn more about the book than other sources. Also, discussing a local book is something that occurs frequently at these book talks on the Washburn University campus and specifically, at Mabee Library. Capote’s In Cold Blood is one of the books that people associate with Kan.

“They will talk about their books, and put our signed book in the context of the KBI and Capote, then they will sign copies available at the gathering” said Averill.

This book reading will allow the Washburn University community to talk about the book In Cold Blood and Truman Capote’s influences in Kan. because this book is well known throughout the United States of America and the world as being associated with Kan.

The first-edition Capote and KBI agent copy of In Cold Blood was donated this past month according to the “Topeka Capital-Journal” online article “Early ‘In Cold Blood’ book signed by Capote, KBI agents donated to WU” at  http://search.cjonline.com/fast-elements.php?querystring=in%20cold%20blood%20wu&profile=cjonline&type=standard.

“Also present will by the generous giver of the book to the Kansas collection–Lynn Wilkerson.  The book will be on display, along with other recent donations to the collection” said Averill.