Answered Prayers
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Answered Prayers

3.56 of 5 stars 3.56  ·  rating details  ·  1,727 ratings  ·  103 reviews
Although Truman Capote’s last, unfinished novel offers a devastating group portrait of the high and low society of his time.

Tracing the career of a writer of uncertain parentage and omnivorous erotic tastes, Answered Prayers careens from a louche bar in Tangiers to a banquette at La Côte Basque, from literary salons to high-priced whorehouses. It takes in calculating beau...more
Paperback, 181 pages
Published April 1st 1988 by Abacus Books / Sphere (first published January 1st 1986)
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K.D. Absolutely
Too bad that this is an unfinished novel. I could have given this at least 4 stars.

According to Wiki, Capote was not able to finish this novel because he got busy with the stardom In Cold Blood (4 stars) gave him. In 1966, he signed a contract with Random House to write this book with January 1st 1968 as the delivery date. He missed the date and the contract was renegotiated in 1969 with 1973 as the new delivery date. He missed again so it was moved further to 1974. Missed again so on to 1977. M...more
Mike
.Answered Prayers: Truman Capote's unfinished novel of life among the low and high side of life

More tears are shed over answered prayers than unanswered ones.--St. Teresa of Avila

Capote's Answered Prayers: The Unfinished Novel began as a series of notes in 1958. It was a project Capote kept under close wraps. It was not until January 5, 1966, Capote approached Random House signing a contract with an advance of $25,000 with a delivery date of January 1, 1968.

Capote described the novel as a Proust...more
Maureen
Jul 24, 2008 Maureen rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Shelves: novel
Whatever possessed Capote to turn on his lifelong friends, like Jackie O. and her sister, Lee Raziwill, William and Babe Paley, and the rest of the New York social set is beyond me. The fact that this novel was contracted for in 1966 and remained unpublished until after his death, says much about his ambivalence towards the project. At the same time, Capote spent many years being the lapdog to moneyed New Yorkers, wined and dined at the finest restaurants before going back to his room at the YMC...more
karen
This is my favorite Capote book even over Other Voices, Other Rooms. Perhaps because it IS unfinished and shrouded in such mystery, despair, potential, and ultimately dissolution. I reread it every couple years. Was Capote blacklisted because he was telling tales outside of school, or because he revealed the glitterati for what they were, hypocrites and debauches? A novel that raises more questions as it moves to conclusion. Answered Prayers indeed!
Tosh
Why I picked up what some consider to be Truman Capote's worst work is to this day a mystery to me. I was at Alias East Bookstore on Brand, and I had $7 more credit. Due that I didn't want to hold on to a credit in my pocket for the next week or so, decided on this as a mood purchase. Also I recently got back from New York City, and I wanted to read something 'classic' from Manhattan aesthetic. My understanding is that "Answered Prayers" was a novel that Capote never finished, but talked about c...more
André Benjamim


«Mais lágrimas são choradas por súplicas atendidas do que por aquelas que não o são». Súplicas Atendidas, de Truman Capote, traz como aviso estes versos de Santa Teresa. Esta foi a obra derradeira de Truman Capote, a obra megalómana tantas vezes anunciada, ansiada por uns, temida por outros, e nunca concluída. Truman Capote tinha uma visão aguçada que transformava em palavras afiadas, contundentes flechas que iam certeiras ao cerne do alvo, que feriam e aliviavam. Este foi o romance que foi «con...more
Bookworm
Sep 03, 2007 Bookworm rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: those want to read everything Capote wrote
I don't know what I was expecting when I picked Answered Prayers up at the library. It's a cross between something you'd read in Playboy and Vanity Fair magazines. Not a classy story. If it hadn't been written by Capote, I probably wouldn't have even bothered picking it up.
Cathy
I recently read an article about Truman Capote and decided to read this unfinished manuscript. The title is a quote from St Teresa "More tears are shed over answered prayers than unanswered ones". This is the first three chapters that were published in magazines causing his estrangement from New York Society and his many benefactors. CNN's Anderson Cooper has said his Mother, Gloria Vanderbilt, was very hurt by the thinly veiled portrayal of her in the third chapter "La Cote Basque" she never fo...more
Stefan
It's a shame there isn't a complete behemoth version of this on the market. My secret wish is that he did finish it and it's hidden away somewhere, only to be found one day. It's delightfully sleazy and scandalous, and very well written.

After doing the hard crime angle, the world of celebrity gossip was a new career in a new town. He managed to get accepted and the vault of stories opened up. Too bad he printed some of the more spicy parts in advance, or he might've been able to get all the jui...more
Felisa Rosa
The story of a mendacious hustler who rises through the layers of dissolute high society. In a way, an unfinished novel mimics life with an adeptness that the great books can not attain: an unfinished novel offers set-ups that go nowhere, potential unrealized, and unresolved mysteries. Luckily, Capote wrote his chapters out of order, so Answered Prayers has a sort of conclusion. In keeping with my metaphor, reading Capote's last work is a bit like running into a friend every ten years: each ch...more
Lobstergirl
Aug 19, 2012 Lobstergirl rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Lobstergirl by: St. Teresa of Avila
Shelves: own, fiction
Capote's unfinished roman à clef has its moments, when the snark is enjoyable and the cattiness chuckleworthy. But the impression I was left with is more one of subdued disgust; how much of the doings of a bisexual hustler can you absorb before you need to imbibe some Willa Cather, or Cotton Mather, as a palate cleanser?

Key:
P.B. Jones = Truman Capote
Alice Lee Langman = Katherine Ann Porter
Kate McCloud = an amalgam of women, including Mona Bismarck (Mrs. Harrison Williams), Ann Woodward, Pamela...more
Scott
For those of you who are unfamiliar with Truman Capote’s life this book is significant on so many levels. First, this book destroyed the majority of Truman’s friendships since he literally was writing about his friends. Truman spent the remainder of his days exiled from those who he had fought to get so close to.

The three chapters of this book represent a great deal of potential in what might have been a truly magnificent novel. The first two chapters flow together so beautifully, it is evident...more
Selene
Me gustaron mucho las primeras dos historias (mounstruos perfectos y Kate McCloud, de esta última me hubiese gustado que fuera un poco más larga,para saber como es que este gigolo término a su lado. No desapruebo la historia de la côte basque, es buena pero no, siento que le faltó ese algo.
Por otra parte es el segundo libro de Capote que leo, me sonreí porque recordé que me quedé con la misma sensación cuando leí breakfast at Tiffany's, libro en el cual tiene 3 historias,dos de ellas me fascinar...more
Llew
It's an unfinished novel, so I can't be too harsh, but I'm not sure I understood what it was even about or what the controversy that surrounded it was about either. The whole thing is meant to scandalize the reader with details of gay prostitutes and people publicly urinating on others, or celebrities talking about who slashes their wrists, but there's no point. Just meant to shock without purpose. And not written well. After seeing Capote, it made me wonder if the author was just a deeply troub...more
Stacy LeVine
Hilarious! Rife with only-sometimes-veiled gossip about real-life NYC luminaries so salacious it makes the mouth water, this is uniquely inspired prose from a true American master (whose career and life were summarily destroyed by the precious text, hence "unfinished"). Not sure how it reads to someone who doesn't know their history, because I know mine. And, to me, this is a very special historical relic. If you know your NYC literary/cinematic/socialite history and/or love Capote, DO NOT MISS...more
Kathleen
This shit is bananas! Loved. it..
Pooja Pillai
My only regret is that this book is unfinished. I was tearing through the book, devouring sentence after witty sentence and was taking such pleasure in Capote's malice and sarcasm, when the book came to an end. And it had just got to the crux of its plot!
Anyway, I really enjoyed the descriptions of the high society and bohemia in the USA and Europe, and the complicated and intrigue-filled lives they live. This is the first book of Capote's in which I have encountered such frank depictions of sex...more
Al Riske
Crude, self-indulgent, and - worse - boring.
Lori
Mmmm...not my favorite Truman Copote book.
Psychopu
Capote could write. Oh if he could. Not that my opinion counts anything, but I would never let anybody else get away with a tedious book like this one without feeling at least slightly homicidal. Tedious is a compliment, actually. But let's not be so harsh. It's always sad to come to the realization a great talent is gone. Or rather, a great mind behind that talent.
Answered Prayers is an unfinished posthumously published novel by Truman Capote. It's no secret Capote expended the greatest part of...more
Jackie
Oh, Capote, with your genre-defying cattiness. I haven't struggled this long over which shelves to put something on in a long time. For instance: this is a fictionalization, and obviously some stuff is made up, and, yes, it's a novel, but I couldn't help but put it on my Not Fiction shelf because c'mon. Also Paris figured into it glancingly, but if ever a book was about booze and sexuality (the other two criteria for that shelf) it's this one.
And, Truman, you gave me hell with the star rating sy...more
Tara
this is yet another book where i've come to realize that as an author / writer, one is merely an observer but not quite a participant. unless you're writing your life and adventures, or interesting details about others, otherwise, where's the fun in that?

here, capote dishes the dirt on those he knows. interestingly, it's only his closest friends, which i didn't even find interesting. there were mentions of Jackie O, her sister, and a few other famous figures, but those were mentioned only in pas...more
Therese
Ah, what I wouldn't give for this to be a finished product.

There are two things that make this a four-star book instead of a five-star.

1. It's not finished. It's an unfinished novel, and that means that a lot of the plot-lines were left unresolved, we didn't get to know what all the build-up was for, and we didn't find out how he ends up in the situation that he is in in "present-time", which I'm sure we would've gotten to know in a finished product.

2. The last thirty pages. I though I was gonn...more
Martin
Every novel is a form of catharsis in one way or another. It's the deal we make when we buy a book: if the author packages their woes, hopes and gripes well and in an entertaining way, then we will patiently listen and even enjoy ourselves. With all the reader oriented writing Truman did in his career, in the final analysis it's clear that he ultimately did not understand for whom he was writing. In Answered Prayers we see the world through Truman's eyes as he must have experienced life on earth...more
Jacob
I was reading about Harold Brodkey's novel The Runaway Soul when, for reasons I can't recall, I thought "Hey, didn't Truman Capote also have an unfinished novel?" So I looked him up, and there it was, and for some reason I decided to read it instead. Oops. From what I understand, The Runaway Soul is a complete story, though possibly part of a larger, unfinished sequence, whereas all that exists of Answered Prayers, Capote's attempt to become the American Proust, is just three chapters long. The...more
J
Yuck! This book ruins my fond feelings about Capote. Within the first few pages, multiple sexual acts involving homosexuality & an underage boy are described. Pedofile priests are also mentioned. Apparently, this is gay literature. Stopped reading as soon as I realized what I had picked up.

I'm reading In Cold Blood for book club and I was surprised by how well written it was & how pleasant it is read... especially in light of the topic. I decided to find more writing by Capote & was...more
Tara
Even though this work was not completed upon the writer's death, it doesn't seem to lack much by not having an 'official' close. The thing about Capote is that he was truly a master of words, with beautiful and original descriptions of people, places and events that the average person would never see in the same way. He sure could write. The cattiness of the book was at times uproarious and deliciously indulgent, but there was a sense of loss in all of it, too, like there was something missing i...more
Amelia
Sep 09, 2008 Amelia rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People not offended easily, especially by sex
Having never read anything by Capote before, I didn't know what to expect but I definitely didn't expect this. That's not a bad thing-- I was just taken by surprise by just about everything except the wit (I at least knew that about Capote). I can see why Answered Prayers angered a lot of the socialites that Capote knew and used as templates, but I really enjoyed the scandalous and provocative air of it.

I really wish Capote had finished, because the third installment does just leave the reader...more
Nuno Fernandes
Mal amanhado. Desinteressante. Desagradavelmente perverso e com imensos momentos que não levam a lado nenhum. O último capítulo é uma tortura desconexa dos primeiros dois capítulos. Falta de vontade em escrever o livro? Daí ter sido adiada a sua feitura, consecutivamente pelo próprio Capote?

Capote neste livro equivale à personagem principal, P.B. Jones, aspirante a grande autor de livros (como Proust) e homossexual frustrado, sem sucesso. Muito material, sobretudo os mexericos, por vezes intere...more
antonia vitale
ok. so, i know what you are thinking: "how is she giving truman capote 2 stars??". i will tell you how. i hold capote up to a high standard. specifically, the In Cold Blood, Breakfast at Tiffany's standard. and well, this just cant compare to either. granted, it is an unfinished novel, and for what is essentially a collection of short stories that are intertwined, it is good... but not good enough. capote had nearly 20 years to get the damn thing done and yet he couldnt make it happen. the resul...more
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Truman Capote was an American writer whose non-fiction, stories, novels and plays are recognised literary classics, including the novella Breakfast at Tiffany's (1958) and In Cold Blood (1965), which he labeled a "non-fiction novel." At least 20 films and TV dramas have been produced from Capote novels, stories and screenplays.

He was born as Truman Streckfus Persons to a salesman Archulus Persons...more
More about Truman Capote...
In Cold Blood Breakfast at Tiffany's: And Three Stories Other Voices, Other Rooms A Christmas Memory Music for Chameleons

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“More tears are shed over answered prayers than unanswered ones.” 271 likes
“That's the question: is truth an illusion, or is illusion truth, or are they essentially the same? Myself, I don't care what anybody says about me as long as it isn't true.” 11 likes
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