James Franco’s camp wouldn’t give us an interview with the Everywhere It Boy, but we think you should read his book anyway. His first short story collection, Palo Alto, is out today.

And now, 10 Reasons to Read Franco:

1. Four out of four Kirkus reviewers and editors have read Palo Alto and agree—it’s really, really good.

2. His character kills someone in the very first story, “Halloween.”

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3. Lines like this are peppered throughout the entire book: “Funny how new facts pop up and make you doubt that that there’s any goodness in life.” (also from “Halloween”)

4. He makes one hell of a drag queen.

5. If you loved Freaks and Geeks, the highly acclaimed TV show that was also Franco’s breakout role, you will like this book—stories about the awkward, dark, funny, terrifying trappings of being a teenager in a dull, middle-class, go-nowhere town.

6. Because Franco writes a few of these stories from a girl’s perspective, and it actually works.

7. Because he has balls—he’s studying writing and film, put out an art show, recently took on Allen Ginsberg (Howl) and that guy who cut his own arm off (127 Hours), and he doesn’t really seem to care what anyone thinks. We just hope his next project is a boy band.

8. Because Publishers Weekly hated it: “But the author fails to find anything remotely insightful to say in these 11 amazingly underwhelming stories.”

9. Because he openly talks about his obsession with Twilight—and how the sex scene in Breaking Dawn kinda sucks.

10.  Because we gave him a star: “Actor Franco’s stories are impressive: crisp, spare, depressing…A collection of beautifully written stories that are also uncompromisingly stark and somber.”