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Blood Will Out

Walter Kirn

8 Reviews

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True crime, Prose: non-fiction

An In Cold Blood for our time, a chilling, compulsive story of a writer unwittingly caught in the wake of a grifter-turned-murderer.

In the summer of 1998, Walter Kirn - then a young novelist struggling with fatherhood and a dissolving marriage - set out on a peculiar, fateful errand: to personally deliver a crippled hunting dog from an animal shelter in Montana to the New York apartment of one Clark Rockefeller, a secretive young banker and art collector. Thus began a fifteen-year relationship that drew Kirn deep into the fun-house world of an outlandish, eccentric son of privilege who, one day, would be shockingly unmasked as a brazen serial impostor and brutal double-murderer.

This is a one-of-a-kind story of an innocent man duped by a real-life Mr Ripley, taking us on a bizarre and haunting journey from the private club rooms of Manhattan to the courtrooms and prisons of Los Angeles.

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Praise for Blood Will Out

  • The story of Blood Will Out is one of cosmic ironies and jaw-dropping reversals Kirn s persona is captivating funny, pissed off, highly literate, and self-searching... An elegant, classic writer Add the highly readable, intricately told Blood Will Out to the list of great books about the dizzying tensions of the writing life and the maddening difficulty of getting at the truth. - Slate

  • Fascinating... Blood Will Out is a moral tale about the dangers of social climbing on a rickety ladder for both those trying to scramble up the rungs and those trying to hold it steady below. - The Washington Post

  • In this smart, real-life psychological thriller, the fake Rockefeller is a zombie Gatsby and Kirn the post-apocalyptic Fitzgerald. - New York Times Book Review

  • Page-turning . . . Invoking Jay Gatsby and The Talented Mr Ripley, [Kirn] shows us the way one individual, by simply dropping names all over the place, going sockless and never carrying a wallet, can get alarmingly far in a country that was founded on self-invention. - National Public Radio

  • There is no finer guide to the American berserk than Walter Kirn. - Gary Shteyngart

  • Written with Walter Kirn's usual stylistic verve, insight, and imagination. - Joyce Carol Oates

  • Walter Kirn's account of this psychopath is mesmerising and insightful . . . The trial scenes are grippingly suspenseful, the performances of both prosecuting and defence lawyers thrillingly depicted. - Independent

  • One of the most unsettling and compelling memoirs I've ever read - Daisy Goodwin, The Sunday Times

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Walter Kirn

Walter Kirn has written a collection of short stories, My Hard Bargain, and several novels, including Thumbsucker (made into a film in 2005, starring Keanu Reeves and Vince Vaughn), Mission to America, and The Unbinding, and internet-only novel. He has written for The New Yorker, The New York Times Book Review, Vogue and Esquire and has served as an American cultural correspondent for the BBC. He was the 2008-9 Vare Non-fiction Writer in Residence at the University of Chicago.

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