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Now Entering HOLCOMB, KANSAS Population: 300
The story begins on the plains of West Kansas in the quaint town of Holcomb. Holcomb is described as being a desolate land with a tightly-knit community neighboring Garden City, a metropolis.
In Holcomb, the most well known family is the Clutters. Herbert, Bonnie, Kenyon, & Nancy Clutter - all of whom live on the River Valley Farm owned and operated by Herbert Clutter with the assistance of a ranch-hand and a business associate.
The Clutters are highly respected and revered in Holcomb. Each character is nuanced and is representative of themes within the book. Herbert Clutter - A wealthy farm owner and the head of the Clutter Family, a bastion of respect. Bonnie Clutter - The matriarch of the Clutter Family who is a depressed neurotype. Kenyon Clutter - The only son of Bonnie and Herbert who is highly intelligent. Nancy Clutter - The youngest daughter of Bonnie and Herbert and a thriving socialite.
The Climax of the story occurs when the entirety of the Clutter Family (excluding Eveanna & Beverly) is murdered in cold blood. After the murder, the town is in uproar theorizing about who committed the murders and why.
As speculation continued in Holcomb, a former cellmate of Dick Hickock's ties him to the murder. The FBI puts out a BOLO on Dick and Perry who fled to Miami then Las Vegas where they were subsequently captured and sentenced to Death Row. Dick - A former prisoner who plans the murder of the Clutters. Perry - A psychological enigma, as described by Dick, who lied about murdering a black man in Las Vegas with a bike chain.
The theme of "In Cold Blood" is one that compares the dissimilarity between attaining the American Dream (a very prevalent notion in the mid 1900s) through hardwork and dedication, and instant gratification through crime.
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