Breakfast at Tiffany’s is a first-person narrative with a young male writer as its single point of view. The narrator relates what he observes of the life and experiences of Holly Golightly, a young Texas woman who has come to New York in the early 1940’s seeking new life, excitement, and glamour, which she feels is in keeping with her freewheeling, sometimes irresponsible, approach to life.
Like Other Voices, Other Rooms, which preceded it, Breakfast at Tiffany’s presents a free-spirited person trying to escape from the tawdry aspects of a past life by finding a lifestyle more compatible with her dreams and fantasies. Capote’s story of Holly develops as a remembrance triggered in the writer-narrator’s memory by an encounter with a Lexington Avenue bar proprietor, Bell, who had known Holly as a frequent and colorful patron of his bar. Bell reports to the narrator that Holly in 1956 may have been seen in East Anglia, in Africa, where a Japanese photographer (who also had known Holly in New York) has encountered a wooden replica of Holly’s face in a remote native village. The writer then recalls his first encounter with Holly when he had rented an apartment in the same building as she (and the photographer) during the early years of World War II.
The writer (whom Holly calls “Fred,” after her brother, who is in the military service) grows more familiar with the irrepressible Holly after their first meeting. He finds that she views life essentially as a continuing party; some noisy parties occur in Holly’s apartment. Holly first met the writer as she slid into his apartment from the fire escape one evening. He soon learns that Holly plays host to a wide assortment of mostly male friends, ranging from soldiers to Hollywood agents to an...
(The entire section is 738 words.)