Franco's "powerful" debut to Faber

Franco's "powerful" debut to Faber

<p>Faber has acquired a d&eacute;but novel by &quot;a powerful new literary voice&quot;&mdash;belonging to &quot;Spiderman&quot; actor James Franco.</p><p>Editor Walter Donohue bought UK and Commonwealth rights, excluding Canada, to <em>Palo Alto</em> from Simon &amp; Schuster for an undisclosed sum. Faber will publish in January 2011.</p><p>Donohue said: &quot;James Franco&#39;s writing is vivid and disturbing, but what distinguishes his work is the great compassion he extends towards his characters. He presents his characters in all their raw humanity, while at the same time providing insight into the teenage mind.&quot;</p><p>Set in a northern &shy;California university town,<em> Palo Alto</em> traces the lives of an extended group of teenagers as they &quot;experiment with vices of all kinds, struggle&shy; with their families and one another, and succumb to self-destructive, often heartless nihilism&quot;, the publisher said.</p><p>Franco has won a Golden Globe award for his portrayal of James Dean in a TV bio-pic of the actor&#39;s life and has appeared in such films as &quot;Pineapple Express&quot; and &quot;Milk&quot;. Over the course of the past two years, he has been awarded degrees in English literature from UCLA and Creative Writing from Columbia and has been accepted in to Yale&#39;s English PhD programme.</p><p><em>Palo Alto</em> will be published in the US by Scribner. </p>