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2.82  ·  Rating details ·  270 Ratings  ·  31 Reviews
From one of America's most original and celebrated filmmakers comes a trenchant and ironic deconstruction of youth culture and filmmaking. Spunky Davis, a middle-aged maker of infomercials, is trying to finish a screenplay that he hopes will bring him Hollywood glory when two aspiring filmmakers enter the picture, promising to take Spunky to the mysterious realm of Pink, w ...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published November 17th 1997 by Faber and Faber (first published January 1st 1997)
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Jun 17, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nostalgic and shamelessly sentimental in its own unirritating way, "Pink" takes feeling over fact, vibe over memory. A tricky approach, which is almost guaranteed to set a novel apart from any chances of mass market success, actually works wonders for this one. Be it because of Van Sant already being an accomplished artist by the time of publishing, or him not caring about the reception of it to begin with, this book is perfect in its childish indifference to reader's convinience, and that is ex ...more
Yolanda Gorman
Weird and bizarre are words that don't quite cover this book. It was hard to read at times because of its use of footnotes would be distracting. After a while I did get used to it. There are definitely characters that are based on River Phoenix, Kurt Cobain and Ben Affleck/Matt Damon. There is a lack of cohesion, as the story jumps around a lot. However, I did get used to it and enjoyed the oddness. This book is not for just any kind of reader. It takes the reader through a variety of emotions s ...more
Marina Robbins
Apr 02, 2010 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
What can I say?? There are times, when even in his films, I continue this love/hate relationship with Gus. Mostly it's love, but recently I wrote a review on the film Paranoid Park which wasn't favorable.

This is a first, and possibly last, novel by Van Zant and understandably. It felt as if I was reading a complete list of mindless thoughts and babbling about life from his past, the many boys he longs to bang, and finally a peak into life as a burgeoning film maker. I was completely bored and on
Chris Herdt
Dec 18, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I recall enjoying this book and identifying perhaps a little too much with the protagonist's addiction to heavy equipment.
Very crazy but it is Gus Van Sant and a character inspired in River so...I enjoyed.
Jan 31, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book very quickly which is a testament to the easy going writing style despite the 'plot' not being easily defined. The novel itself is a trifle bizzare - a cross between Tom Robbins, Douglas Coupland and the movies of Gus Van Sant - but it maintains a momentum that pulls you through despite the ending feeling a little slapdash and the concept of 'Pink' (an alternate dimension) being shoehorned in at the end and only partially developed.

The main character is a infofilm director named
Oct 13, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: weird-fiction
Pink was... cute and subversive and different- but all the things that made it good were also huge distractions.
Parts of it were non-sense and parts were beautiful and often they were the same parts.
The self-reverential theme was needed, perhaps, in a story about time travel, and it gave it a depth it would have other-wised lacked, but it also seemed to be a too easy method of explaining away some of the novel's more peculiar idiosyncrasies... for example the characters all having multiple nam
Sep 19, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved this novel to pieces. Charmingly weird and haphazard; packed with some lovely, original, INNOCENT ideas and writing. Hit-and-miss, surely, but mostly hit.
Most of all, it's probably the most rewarding and kind gift Gus could ever have given his dedicated fans; full of introspect to his kind (...kinds!) of cinema, and surely full of his love for all kinds of cinema at large. Just flipping through it makes me full of admiration and love for him yet again.
I dunno, it's a fucking treat and it
Steev Hise
Nov 09, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of van sant's films, portland residents, film students, rockstars
Shelves: filmmaking
A trippy, surreal piece of fiction that is clearly very self-referential to Van Sant's life and world, full of veiled satiric references to real filmmakers and places. The story sort of floats and then falters at the end and never really reaches a release, it just sort of... floats away. But it's an entertaining read while it lasts, very funny, irreverent, and provokes lots of thought about filmmaking, hollywood, Portland, pop culture, middle age, and more.
Jun 03, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
If I have to pay for a book I tend to read it to the end. In this case I had to make an exception. The plot is too disjointed to follow and the author is trying out a new format for a novel which doesn't seem to work. I did like the cartoons but then I like illustrations anyway. The endless footnotes as a means of filling in background just wore me out. It was like reading two concurrent novels.

Nice idea but obviously didn't catch on.
Robert Hudder
Sep 03, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Finished this days ago. The story was okay. The best part was the way the story was told but unfortunately, I didn't love the rest of the bits like the characters. It may have been trying too hard. The final bits when you get to the time travel parts are a bit flat compared to some of the earlier bits.

That is all.
Clare Nina
As a fan of Gus Van Sant, River Phoenix, and Kurt Cobain, who all feature in this book under pseudonyms (Spunky, Felix, Blake respectively), this was mandatory reading. The narrative is a bit of a mess but it is still entertaining and beautiful in parts, particularly in the moments in which Spunky is mourning the loss of Felix. Definitely an enjoyable exercise in '90s nostalgia for this reader.
Jun 22, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
relies on devices to the point of distraction -- from the endless footnotes to the change in typeface denoting a character switch, the flipbook character hidden in the lower corner of the pages rises as the singular steady thread throughout. likely more entertaining text for filmmakers (constant references to method and culture of), leaves the layman... bored.
May 30, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pink is an interesting vacation into a wilderness of profanity that I can't help feeling grateful for. At times, the reader realizes that nothing makes sense and yet, experiences illumination unlike he or she has ever felt before.
Mark Taylor
Feb 04, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Gus Van Sant uses time travel and multiple dimensions to muddy the autobiographical incidents that run through Pink. Written in a Hemingway-ish style that doesn't get in the way, nor engage, nor stimulate, this novel is mercifully quick to read, and yet, still a waste of time.
Feb 28, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think I may be the only person to like this book. It's crazy and all over the place it rarely seems cohesive yet it all works in a almost (david)lynch type style that makes it unique and interesting.
Blake Nelson
Oct 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A great book, a look inside the life of a young indie-film maker, probably very autobiographical. Very interesting, and fun and a great slice of life of Gus's life.... highly recommend, especially for film makers.
Sep 10, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
I'm still not sure whether I actually liked this or not.
Mar 21, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
At the beginning might sound a bit no sense..until you find the paragraph that expalins it all..good luck. Only for GVS fans.
Fo Mi
Aug 17, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jan 08, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

I have 7 or 9 pages in this book of my writing.
Gus was fun to hang out with and this was a good experience,
except for the part where I didnt get to be a movie star!

Greg Allan Holcomb
I thought this was okay. I just took it off my prized bookshelf. It was there for being the author's debut novel in a first printing.

My buddy Yancik thought it was great.
Allison B
Jun 06, 2010 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Billy Mays meets Kurt Cobain. Weird could not finish it.
Jul 31, 2009 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
A friend sent me this book and I feel bad saying it but I couldn't stand it. I can understand how it could resonate with some people but I was not one of them.
Did not finish....just too odd!
Harris is a creature. I'm a creature too. Our cellular phones touch in the middle of the table. (p. 242)

He loves you as much as he can, but he cannot love you very much. (p. 230)
Vfields Don't touch my happy!
Just not my thing.
Aug 12, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gay
This book was beyond weird. I still am not sure if I understood it all. But I think that might have been the point.
rated it did not like it
Sep 09, 2008
rated it it was ok
Aug 11, 2015
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Gus Green Van Sant, Jr. is an American film director, photographer, musician, and author. He was nominated for the Best Director Academy Award for his 1997 film Good Will Hunting. He currently lives in Portland, Oregon.

His early career was devoted to directing television commercials in the Pacific Northwest. Openly gay, he has dealt unflinchingly with homosexual and other marginalized subcultures
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“Sometimes getting upset with yourself is necessary when you face the truth.” 4 likes
“Moving provides meaning for our humble (if still vicious) life of four-dimensional existence. Four-dimensional existence makes the frightening fox hunt into an entertainment, or war into a pastime or a sport. Even when evil is dull and monotonous, there tends to be a lot of movement, action and entertainment involved.
Maybe movies are evil.”
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