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Hollywood Forever Paperback – January 29, 2013


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Editorial Reviews

Review

“An actor walks into a DMV...That’s not the beginning of a joke but of a brilliant novel written by Christopher Herz. Not only is Hollywood Forever a smart and witty five-star read—with genuine characters I want to meet for drinks—this book made me stop and question the influence of social media in my own life. If you find yourself checking Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube multiple times a day, Hollywood Forever will cause you to think, too (in a good way that makes you read a second and third time)! To sum it all up in four words: I loved this book!” —Emily Snow, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author

"What intrigues me most about Hollywood Forever is its underlying themes: the blurred boundaries of 'reality' television, the fabricated constructions of identities in digital and social media, and the paradox of losing the ability to communicate in a world that makes communication so accessible. Throw in some revolutionary rhetoric, Rising Sushi, and Red Bull, and the reader walks away with both an entertaining story and a lot to think about." —Elisa Lorello, author of Faking It and Adulation

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 284 pages
  • Publisher: Lake Union Publishing; Unabridged edition (January 29, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 161218703X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1612187037
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 5.5 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,759,367 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

Christopher Herz took to selling copies of his first book, The Last Block in Harlem, on the streets of New York. His unorthodox efforts and fresh contemporary prose garnered the attention of media outlets everywhere, earning him an early spot on the AmazonEncore roster. AmazonEncore then republished the book to critical acclaim, and his novel Pharmacology was released a year later.

Herz is a graduate of the San Francisco State University creative writing program and a regular contributor to the Huffington Post, where he writes extensively on art and culture. Born in New York City, Herz grew up in California, the setting for his searing portrait of American life, Hollywood Forever. He now lives in Brooklyn with his wife.

Customer Reviews

3.5 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Christina Zawadiwsky on January 30, 2013
Format: Paperback
Do we all long for fame? And is that fame about acting out the lives of others, or do we want to be known for who we really are, for our true selves? Does social media create fame artificially and arbitrarily? Christopher Herz's humorous, heartfelt, and socially-aware story of Harold Hall can easily be understood by everyone, everyone who's ever wanted to do something on their own instead of working for corporations that care very little about their workers. Harold tries to maintain part-time jobs as Superman and being a waiter at Sushi Rising to support himself while he goes to auditions, but this isn't his "real life", just a step on the way to the life for which he will be known forever, which he assumes will be through acting roles that really aren't about him - but life has a twist in store for this guy! Defining his own credo of love bit by bit, and trying to understand whether fame comes from the very depths of one's own being is Harold's path - but he is blocked or aided by institutions along the way to where he thinks that he's going! And what does all of this have to do with money? And about how we're actually formed by what we buy? Read this original and acutely perceptive novel to learn a lot about Harold Hall - and even more about yourself! I, Christina Zawadiwsky, received an Advanced Reader's Copy of Hollywood Forever, by Christopher Herz, from Amazon Publishing.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Jovigirl1982 on February 3, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Herz has a unique tact for being able to have his characters narrate unfiltered. Herz's characters are so real you start to forget they are fictional people. Strongly recommend giving yourself the time to take it all in and lose yourself in his words. There are many questions to ask yourself after reading this book. Personally my mind is still reeling. Sometimes in following our dreams we lose what is most important to us only to find out too late that it's gone.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By 1bookloversopinion on January 29, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I really enjoyed this book. It starts out with a disgruntled Harold Hall at the DMV, little does he know that his meltdown will land him the role of his life. With a very realistic storyline that ties in everyone's addiction with twitter, facebook, email, cellphones you can not go wrong selecting this book. Herz takes the reader on a wild ride with Harold Hall aka Pace Skillman through his dream role while also finding and loosing his one true love. What will Harold do to land this big role?? Is the sacrafice too great? Does he win the girl? You must read to see................
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Robert Downs on February 24, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I don’t know if it’s possible to actually be in love with a book, but I’m fairly certain I am in love with HOLLYWOOD FOREVER. I’d say the love affair started at the beginning with the DMV meltdown and subsequent aftermath and continued all the way to the end of the novel. I’m not sure if I’m a better person for reading it, nor am I sure that my life was somehow enriched, but I must say that I’m pretty darn happy that I discovered this book. And I was slightly depressed when it was finished (not Prozac depressed) but slightly disappointed all the same.

Harold Hall became a legend, although he didn’t start out that way. In fact, he wasn’t even the best looking Superman on the street corner, and he was throttled to the point that the Superman with the better muscles was having bills shoved in his direction and stuffed in his spandex while poor Harold was sucking pavement parts through a straw while slipping in and out of consciousness after his head had swelled up to twice its normal size.

Herz knows female characters. By the halfway point of the novel, I’d developed schoolboy crushes on both Eliah and Samantha Parsons. Both women were well fleshed out and stood out from the printed page like rock stars with their mouths pressed against the microphone as the crowd screamed their names.

The prose was wonderful, depressing, hilarious, beautiful, fulfilling, and the emotional rollercoaster never seemed to end. I equate it to being shoved in a washing machine, having the best sex of my life, being punched out by a TV executive while in the middle of my annual performance review, and then laughing so hard that I have cough syrup coming out of my nose. It was one beautiful, miraculous mess, and I was in the middle of one of the best dreams of my life.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Cyrus Webb TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 23, 2012
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
"If you are what you say you are, a superstar...Then have no fear, the camera is here...And the microphones..."

That chorus by Matthew Santos in Lupe Fiasco's SUPERSTAR kept playing through my head as I read HOLLYWOOD FOREVER, the latest offering by author Christopher Herz. As was the case in his previous novel, Herz has been able to once again take the reader on a journey not too different from our own with a story laced with commentary that is sure to have the reader talking.

Through the character Harold Hall we are allowed into the life that has been made popular by movie stars and even those who become infamous through reality television. Hall wants people to know him and to love him, recognizing his gift and his importance in the world. Even when his present reality doesn't match the hype he hopes to generate, he is persistent and unrelenting---even at the cost of those he loves.

Eliah, the one who loves Harold for who he truly is---not for what he wants to be---seems to not be enough for the man who wants it all and believes he can have it all. But can he? When an opportunity arises that offers him the very world he wants, will it cost him not just his relationship but his very soul?

There was so much that readers can get from HOLLYWOOD FOREVER and the 1st person narrative of Harold Hall that the author allows us to live. First it is realizing that all of us want a bit of the celebrity life, feeling that who we are and what we bring to the table warrants attention. We sometimes forget that all decisions---even those that appear good---can have dire consequences. Herz also takes the phenomena that is social media and the internet and allows us to see how our lives in many ways are no longer our own.
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