Palo Alto is the debut of a surprising and powerful new literary voice. Written with an immediate sense of place--claustrophobic and ominous--James Franco's collection traces the lives of an extended group...more
On the screen, you must have seen him as:
- Harry Osborn the friend turns nemesis as Green Goblin of SPIDER-MAN
- Tristan the lover of Isolde in the classic remake of TRISTAN AND ISOLDE
- Saul Silver who supports his grandma in the retirement home by dealing drugs in the PINEAPPLE EXPRESS
- Scott Smith the lover of Mayor Castro, played by Sean Penn in MILK
- Aron Ralston the you...more
The Book Report: Sixteen short stories about adolescent life in upper middle class America. The author hailing from there, he's written about Palo Alto, California. It could as easily be Cedar Park, Texas, or Rockville Centre, New York. The stories are very much in the vein of adolescence itself, working the same nerve in me as adolescents do: Getting drunk, getting high, hooking up, wondering if you're the only one, being ostracized, being Too Cool for School, realizing yo...more
None of the stories contain any meaning beyond the petty problems of privileged suburban teens, who apparently do nothing with their time but get drunk, get high, drive their...more
I picked it up because I went to middle school with the actor, and it's written about my home turf in the 90s, so naturally, I was curious.
Every story or so is set in the landmarks of the boring town where I grew up--JLS, Gunn, Paly, the Main Library. Blah Blah Blah.
But here's where I started to get upset. There are a lot of elements in this book that are not fiction. The story about "Mr. B" who molested girls at our middle school, the...more
So when I read Palo Alto all the way through, it was because I was curious about James Franco's writing and workshop education.
I thought that most of these stories blended into one another, which is not necessarily a bad thing and seems to happen in a lot of short story collections. All of...more
I admit that I wouldn’t have been interested in this collection of short stories if they weren’t penned by the (hunky) Franco. I've liked him since ‘Freaks and Geeks’, but especially for his winning...more
Otherwise, this book was a great collection for a first time writer of prose and it is worth a read. It is qui...more
Franco is very bold in his writing. The stories are extremely short, each only a few pages, and Franco jumps right into the nitty gritty. Thro...more
Well, the actor who possesses quite the host of artistic outlets is now debuting his writing in a book of short stories based on the city he grew up in -- Palo Alto. I don't know anything about Pal...more
But, I mean, I should be snarky and take ol' Mr. Franco down a peg or two, right? That's kind of a problem when the stories in this books are actual...more
Two things: 1. I didn't like most of this collection, and found it very flawed. 2. I don't th...more
I can see flashes of the undoubtedly talented writer that Franco will become, but this tome just didn't seem worth the effort and ex...more
Though I didn't find it to be a "great work", it was definitely a really good first book, worth the read and interesting right from the start.
Which in itself is a major accomplishment since so many writers are boring in their intros.
It's actually pretty typical of contemporary literary short fic, so I think that a lot of the reviewers and people hating it are probably readers not familiar with the already weird genre. At least for me it's...more
Franco’s writing is simple, not overly convoluted just d...more