“One of the things I pride myself on is being able to fit into whatever film I do,” the actor and artist James Franco told The Guardian last year, explaining his diverse resume that ranges from stoner comedies (Pineapple Express) to arthouse flicks (Wim Wenders’ 3D-drama Everything Will Be Fine). Over the years, Franco has both charmed and bemused critics with his refusal to be placed in a neat box, exploring the realms of poetry, fiction, art, and performance with equal gusto. His Twitter and Instagram feeds alone might qualify as an art project. Not everyone approves—”I don’t think anybody’s afraid to write a bad review of my stuff,” he told New York Magazine — but his all-consuming commitment to creativity can’t be denied.



BLOOD MERIDIAN

Cormac McCarthy
“This is the western to end all westerns. Its rich tableaux of the borderlands mixed with unrelenting violence creates an inimitable portrait of our country’s history.”


THE LONG HOME
William Gay
“An unabashed disciple of Cormac McCarthy, this is the first book by a reclusive man who had old Tennessee pumping in his veins. Youth versus experience, love versus hate, this is a distinctly southern tale of a honkey tonk, murder, young lovers, and retribution.”


JESUS’ SON
Denis Johnson
“A slim book of interconnected stories following a hapless drug addict nicknamed “Fuckhead.” Humorous, dark, and moving, with prose that surprises with its drug fueled imagery.”


THE SELLOUT
Paul Beatty
“This book killed me. Funny, poignant, outrageous, and deep as hell. Beatty talks about all the hard stuff of race with great skill and humor.”


AS I LAY DYING
William Faulkner
“On the surface it’s the simple story of a family going to bury their mother; underneath it is a roiling tale of desperation, love, and struggle.”


THE BRIEF WONDROUS LIFE OF OSCAR WAO
Junot Díaz
“Everyone knows Junot Díaz is the man. This book is hilarious and heartbreaking in equal measure; pop-cultural and political. Just a great read.”


PAULINA & FRAN
Rachel B. Glaser
“Art school, lovers, comedy. I recently read this book and fell in love with its characters and prose. It’s quirky and right on about trying to be creative today.”


WHAT WE TALK ABOUT WHEN WE TALK ABOUT LOVE
Raymond Carver
“The master of short minimalist fiction, Carver destroys the heart with economic prose like no other.”


IN THE WESTERN NIGHT: COLLECTED POEMS
Frank Bidart
“A student of Robert Lowell, his poems breathe fire. He is both nakedly vulnerable and violently terrifying. My hero.”


DONKEY GOSPEL
Tony Hoagland
“A self-proclaimed post-modern confessionalist poet, his poems gather and distribute so much energy it’s like he’s a boxer, or a wrestler rather than a writer.”

( source: ONEGRAND )

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