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Pop Salvation

3.57 of 5 stars 3.57  ·  rating details  ·  166 ratings  ·  22 reviews
Caleb Watson is not like the other children at his Washington, D.C., private school. Having skipped a grade—and being younger and smaller than the rest of the boys—he finds that his Southern accent and sensitive, reserved nature set him even further apart. Caleb simply does not belong.

But on a field trip to the art museum, Caleb discovers his hero—his icon—when he is expos
Paperback, 272 pages
Published June 23rd 2009 by Harper Perennial (first published June 6th 2009)
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I have so many things to say about Pop Salvation that I don't even know where to begin. I guess I'll start by saying how much I loved it. Based on the back cover, I wasn't sure how interesting this book would be, so it really took me aback once I really got into it. The first few pages start off a little bit slow, but within about 15 pages, you can't help but fall in love with little Caleb Watson and then you won't be able to put the book down until it's finished.

Pop Salvation is a book about th
Gave up. I wanted to like it but I was mostly just bored. It's very character-driven instead of plot-driven, which I don't typically go for. At 30 pages in, I skimmed forward and just seemed to see more of the same play by play style of narration. It came across as kind of pretentious as well, which didn't help me get any more attached to the main character either. I could see where the concept of the coming of age tale for a quirky artistic kid would be appealing, but this was lackluster for me ...more
I picked this book up because it had a good cover. I really do judge a book by its cover. I've never been let down. good books typically have good marketing and so can afford a good cover... but thats besides the point.

It was one of those days where I just wanted to pick up a book I never heard of and sit down to read it. I picked up Reynalds book and a biography of Golda Meir (just in case the Reynald book didn't work out.) Oh but was a great book it was. It was one of the few books that I hav
Luis Saavedra
Having always considered Andy Warhol one of the most interesting people in history I’m always up for any movie or book that explores his personality. Lance Reynald’s debut novel Pop Salvation does it a little differently, through his main character Caleb, a teenager so obsessed with Warhol he decides to adopt his philosophy and looks . It sounds silly the way I just described it but this is not one of those, “ooh look at me, I look like Warhol, call me Andy,” kind of thing. It’s a persona explor ...more
Ginny Froonjian
I picked this up used, I was intrigued by the cover and the plot sounded like a good, easy book to read. It was, but I was surprised with how good it actually was. It is a story to take at face value, there isn't any deep analyzing to do, but it well-written and the characters are likable yet believable, with flaws and problems. Although not a staggering work of literature, a good book for people who like sad stories of redemption. Read it if you're into movies like Requiem for a Dream or Trains ...more
Although it's wonderfully written, I did not count it as a usual good read. If you aren't looking for a very depressing book about the hardships in life where everything that can go wrong will, then set this book down and run for the hills. Most parts are too hard to read. However, the author delivers this tale in such a way to make it seem so real that it's hard not to imagine the characters as people you'd meet on the street.
I do not believe I have ever read a book quite so many times as Pop Salvation. It is beautiful and inspiring. I can honestly say that its message about being yourself and living in a world with people who you really love has changed my life. It tells the stories of how people grow up, change, deal with loss of dreams and friendships and lovers, and find hope yet again.
Wonderful book.
Perhaps not technically a "good" or very original book, but I really enjoyed it since I'm such a huge fan of Andy Warhol (and Rocky Horror, for that matter). I was not expecting it to be so dark and sad. I cried a little. That doesn't really say much since it doesn't take a lot to make me cry while reading a book, but I really liked and cared about the characters.
At first I just thought this was just a fun sort of silly book about a boy in the 80s who loves pop art and The Rocky Horror Picture Show, but it so much more than that. Way more disturbing. And much sadder. But also more moving. But because of that depth of emotion the style (very poppy) feels a little thin at point.s
Very involving. Like trying on a glitter ensemble in a store, which you never intend to buy or wear in public.
Just read it for the second time. Such a moving story, and I relate to Caleb in many ways.
Pop Salvation is one of those rare debut novels wherein the author does not attempt to bludgeon the reader with supposedly nuanced details.

For instance, the story is set in the mid-to-late 1980s. This particular chronology is not incidental to the story. And yet, the time setting is not so lavishly represented as to become a character in and of itself. It simply presents a backdrop which does not impede the view of the actual characters, but allows them to remain themselves timeless.

Caleb is a t
Oct 08, 2009 Noel marked it as abandoned
Shelves: indie, partially-read
I love the idea of this book. But after getting little more than a quarter of the way through it, I have one suggestion: show, don't tell, honey. Sorry, it had to be said. Something about the author's unspoken self-awareness, and implicit recognition that he was telling a story that is already somewhat cliche'd (kid doesn't fit in, discovers art world/punk/the smiths/pot brownies, gets a new haircut and falls in with the hip misfits), made me cringe in embarrassment.
Alex Cassimaty
The basis for a good story and that is half the problem- it doesn't feel as fleshed out as it should be. Seemingly significant events in the life of Caleb are given little more than cursory mention (loss of virginity? Oh right, that happened months ago. Don't get me started on the other development with this). It's a shame really, because these are interesting, flawed characters, that if given the breathing space, could fulfil a much more in-depth tale.
I gave the author a pie-in-the-face to celebrate his new book... or something.
well, because he came along for the ride to the pie-ing event intended for Monica Drake, author of Clown Girl.
She just happened to bring along three more authors, so I pied them all.
True story.
Thanks, Lance.
yeah i really judge books by their covers too. after reading the back i was really interested but i felt the story was too forced into being surreal or (for lack of a better word) artsy. it was as if i just didn't believe a lot of what reynald was telling me, as much as i wanted to.
I couldn't get into this one & I'm surprised that I finished this book at all. Liked the relationship between Aaron and Caleb but hated how so many details were introduced in a sentence, like ooops, here is the reason, I almost forgot. Meh.
Despina Panagakos Yeargin

This is a video of Rufus Wainwright singing his song, The Art Teacher. In some way that I do not understand myself, it reminds me of "Pop Salvation". Lance, any thoughts???
Caleb Finley
I have to be honest when I say that I picked this book up because of the cover. Never did I think it would be in my top 5 favorite books. It is an amazing story and everyone should give it a read!
Nicholas Belardes
Lucid coming-of-age art-obsessed tale about a wide-eyed soul.
Lance Reynald
Dec 08, 2009 Lance Reynald added it  ·  (Review from the author)
just finishing up the tour.
Claire marked it as to-read
Oct 22, 2015
Jenna marked it as to-read
Oct 15, 2015
Simon added it
Aug 10, 2015
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Born in Texas, He is the only son of his parents brief marriage. Raised by his father and stepmother in Washington,DC he spent his childhood years shuffled through several private schools in the DC area, always finding himself on the outside of the grammar school social scene. Briefly attended workshops at the Capitol Hill Arts Workshop and the Corcoran School of Art. Attended liberal arts classe ...more
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“True friends stay with you no matter the distance or time that seperates you from them.” 29 likes
“Seeing through the lens started to become a part of my day-to-day life and I focused on the everyday...I looked for beauty in things that often go unnoticed. The lens allowed me to see the beauty from behind the safe remove of a steel-and-leather-covered folding camera.” 3 likes
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