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Customer reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
61
4.0 out of 5 stars
Palo Alto
Format: Paperback|Change
Price:£6.94+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime


on 21 June 2012
Vaguely interwoven tales of small, unfulfilled, California teen lives. Deftly told, effortlessly convincing, moody and evocative, if somewhat depressing in its depiction of nihilism - probably best in small doses.
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on 28 March 2011
It amazes me that there are three five-star reviews for this book, it really does.

I came to this like many people because I admire Franco as an actor and was interested to see if his on-screen talents transfer to the page; they don't. I really wonder how this book ever came to be published (particularly by Faber and Faber), it reads like an amateurish attempt at emulating both Ernest Hemingway and JD Salinger at the same time. It has "Get me! I have been on creative writing courses!!" scribbled all over it and - lo! - he gives the game away by saying as such in the acknowledgments and in the writer biog on the flyleaf.

My main criticism of these stories is that they are paralysingly dull. I am sure there are some people who would make the argument that this reflects the ennui of the teenage experience, but I really don't care. A couple of the stories in the second part of the book are a bit better; something actually happens in them and an attempt at developing characters is made. But I would suspect that there are readers who might not get that far.

I feel like a grumpy old woman writing this, but there are plenty of writers (who are all probably older) who deal with this subject with more poise, insight and genuine originality than Franco. He could have got away with this as a run-of-the-mill angsty screenplay shot on a shaky camera, but shoving in a bit of extra prose does not a short story collection make.

This is self-conscious twaddle which should have remained scrawled in an old exercise book.
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on 12 May 2014
Really intriguing novel, I found myself thinking about it at the strangest times. I understand not everyone may like it but I found it enjoyable. If you are unsure about trying it out then I say go for it.
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on 22 October 2015
I brought this book because the film adaptation is one of my favourite films so I had high hopes and was not disappointed!
I would recommend highly if you a James Franco fan or love the movie
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on 3 July 2014
Loved this book. James Franco is a very vivid writer, you can clearly see the images he wants to create. While some of it is a little uncomfortable to read it fits in with the theme of the book
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on 15 April 2014
This book was incredible, a variety of different short stories that kept you wanting to read more, the only fault I found was that it wasn't long enough! absolutely adore james franco.
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on 2 January 2013
There are some good moments in this book an Franco can write with some real an interesting voices. However, I felt the variety and subject in the stories were lacking.
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on 10 February 2011
Although orignally critical of this book after reading reviews in various magazines, i was unbelivably surprised at how amazing and talented Mr Franco is. I mainly brought the book because i'm a huge fan of Franco, and after finding out how intelegent he is, i thought i might as well read the book.

The short stories each completely different but capturing teenage life amazingly are beautifully written, Franco even manages to really grasp how life is for teenage girls. This book is simply amazing and i've already lent it to two of my friends, i wouldn't hesitate to buy this, because you'll be pleasantly suprised and glad that you brought it in the end.
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on 20 June 2014
Franco has captured teenage emotions in so many different ways. At some points the writing was uncomfortable to read but made it all the more real.
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on 4 February 2017
Very interesting stories, it almost felt like i was reading someones diaries. An insight to a world i was never part of but always saw growing up.
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