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A dazzling debut about Truman Capote, the literary icon of his age, and the beautiful, wealthy, vulnerable women he called his Swans.

LONGLISTED FOR THE 2019 WOMEN'S PRIZE FOR FICTION

‘Scandalous’ DAILY MAIL
‘Spellbinding’ SUNDAY EXPRESS
‘Sparkling’ GUARDIAN
‘Fascinating’ RED
‘Remarkable’ WOMAN AND HOME
‘Astounding’ EMERALD STREET
‘Glamorous’ IRISH TIMES___________________________

To the outside world, they were the icons of high society — the most glamorous and influential women of their age. To Truman Capote they were his Swans: the ideal heroines, as vulnerable as they were powerful. They trusted him with their most guarded, martini-soaked secrets, each believing she was more special and loved than the next…

Until he betrayed them.

‘Writers write. And one can’t be surprised if they write what they know.’

______________________________
‘The new Donna Tartt’ VOGUE
'A dazzlingly assured first novel... This clever book, with the moreish astringency of a negroni, is a perfect summer cocktail.' SUNDAY TIMES
'A whirlwind of a first novel. There is great pathos in the Swans’ woundings and in their inevitable decline. And the character of Truman himself shimmers through the novel in a wonderful blaze of eccentricity and excess. Outstanding.' ROSE TREMAIN
'A completely fascinating novel and a marvellously skilful re-imagining of real people, times and places. Outstanding.' WILLIAM BOYD

'Our generation’s The Secret History' PENDORA

'Brilliantly written, deeply researched, funny, sharp and moving.' – KATE WILLIAMS, bestselling author of Josephine
'Brilliantly captures Capote’s acid wit and his dramatic downfall.' THE TIMES, Books of the Year
'This is a first novel of extraordinary skill, a book of which Capote would have been proud' OBSERVER
'Greenberg-Jephcott's debut is a devastating read that blurs the lines between vulnerability and narcissism; sex and power... will have you racing breathlessly towards the end' THE POOL

Reviews

Brilliantly captures Capote’s acid wit and his dramatic downfall.

The Times BOOKS OF THE YEAR

A rich, sharp, sting of a book. It made me laugh and grimace and pity monsters. I'm still smiling about it

Stu Turton, bestselling author of THE SEVEN DEATHS OF EVELYN HARDCASTLE

As deliciously gossipy as it is wretched, and Greenberg-Jephcott's unique rendering of Capote's squealing drawl of a voice is unforgettable.

Frankie McCoy, Evening Standard BOOKS OF THE YEAR

Gorgeous... That glittering world - all Dom Perignon, Sobranies, Quaalude and Chanel - is recreated with a lovely eye for detail

Robbie Millen, The Times

A sparkling debut vividly captures the high society women who punished Capote for his indiscreet reporting

The Guardian

A dazzlingly assured first novel... This clever book, with the moreish astringency of a negroni, is a perfect summer cocktail

The Sunday Times

Since reading the totally, totally beautiful Swan Song, I have two new hobbies. Googling photos of Barbara Paley and watching videos of the Camel Walk.

Dolly Alderton

A completely fascinating novel and a marvellously skillful re-imagining of real people, times and places. Outstanding.

William Boyd

This is a first novel of extraordinary skill, a book of which Capote would have been proud

Alex Preston, The Observer

If a writer is going to craft a novel from well-known events, they might as well do it with brio, which this has in spades... A skilled and sparking debut

Suzi Feay, Guardian

A whirlwind of a first novel. There is great pathos in the Swans’ woundings and in their inevitable decline. And the character of Truman himself shimmers through the novel in a wonderful blaze of eccentricity and excess. Outstanding.

Rose Tremain

Swan Song is magnificent. For all the swagger and swish and intrigue, it is consistently well supported with perfect, juicy sentences. Utter corker

Fiona Melrose

Perfect holiday novel, Swan Song by Kelleigh Greenberg-Jephcott. Truman Capote’s struggle with art and society reimagined

Linda Grant, author of THE DARK CIRCLE

[A] seductive spellbinding debut... Greenberg-Jephcott beautifully captures the pain and poignancy alongside the privilege

S Magazine, Sunday Express

A moving account of Capote's own giddy, talent-fuelled ascent and the self-destructive plummet that follows

Mail on Sunday

Brilliantly written, deeply researched, funny, sharp and moving, this wonderful book marks the debut of a major talent.

Kate Williams, bestselling author of Josephine

Swan Song is a whirlwind tour of private jets to Mexico resorts, playboys’ yachts in the Mediterranean, Manhattan martini lunches and so much scandal ... [A] riveting novel

Red

Impressive and clever reimagining of Truman Capote’s fall from grace.

Sunday Times

Scandalous, frenetic, amusing and tragic, this throws open the doors to a privileged world driven by money, sex, power and influence, where stakes are high and, when trust is broken, there’s much to lose.

Daily Mail

Greenberg-Jephcott's debut is a devastating read that blurs the lines between vulnerability and narcissism; sex and power. And, ultimately, it is Capote's self-destruction that will have you racing breathlessly towards the end

The Pool

A fascinating look at American high society in the Sixties and Seventies, and a portrait of a talented writer who couldn’t resist gossip, even if meant ruining his life

Stylist

Simultaneously fabulous and tragic, Swan Song is an incredibly accomplished debut

Attitude

Our generation’s The Secret History

Pendora

Triumphant debut…remarkable

Woman & Home

A vivid debut … based on ten years of research, this is a dazzling read that’s been worth the wait

Image Magazine

Stunning... It’s probably one of the most beautiful books I’ve ever owned

Bookish Chat Blog

Hypnotically fascinating

The Arts Desk

The book is dripping with atmosphere and character and is such a pleasure to read.

And Then I Read A Book blog

Pure pleasure

Evening Standard Magazine

She deftly gives us an insight into their inner lives... while creating defined personalities that resonate and intrigue. Lyrical and fascinating, the fact that this is Greenberg-Jephcott's debut is astounding.

Emerald Street

A stunning debut novel that seamlessly blends history, fact and fiction in this imaginative re-telling of the life of novelist Truman Capote

Woman's Weekly

A brilliant first novel

Rose Tremain, Daily Mail

A slick debut pulled off with brio, Swan Song is glamorous, vivid and sometimes even daring in its intelligence

Irish Times

A dazzling read

Image magazine

Greenberg-Jephcott’s debut is fizzing with energy and ideas…The novel has style and substance in spades.

Observer

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Formats & editions

  • Paperback

    9781786090188

    September 3, 2019

    Windmill Books

    496 pages

    RRP $19.99

    Online retailers

    • Amazon
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Dymocks
    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop
    • The Nile
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • Trade Paperback

    9781786331069

    June 18, 2018

    Hutchinson

    480 pages

    RRP $32.99

    Online retailers

    • Amazon
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Dymocks
    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop
    • The Nile
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • Hardback

    9781786331052

    June 15, 2018

    Hutchinson

    480 pages

    RRP $27.99

    Online retailers

    • Amazon
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Dymocks
    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop
    • The Nile
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

Extract

1974

Theme

For the first time in his life, the words refuse to come.

He lies in bed, propped on a pile of chintz pillows, their suffocating tangle of tea roses faintly reminiscent of a Southern grande dame’s parlor.

We’ve each mused, at one time or another, that somewhere beneath his gnarled-gnome exterior lurks a genteel New Orleans matron, mortified by her host-form’s crassness.

He stares vacantly at the page before him, thoughts elsewhere. On delivery dates he hasn’t met, on advances already spent. On the Fabergé paperweight he’s just nabbed at auction, how it changes hue when the light shines through it just so, citrine tones conjuring Babe’s miniature vegetables, darling little carrots that only grow so big.

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