Violence, and Silence, in Nelson's 'Paranoid Park' In Blake Nelson's novel, Paranoid Park, a 16-year-old skateboarder is implicated when a transit cop is killed at the local skate park, and withdraws into silence as a way of dealing with it. Director Gus Van Sant recently released a film version of the novel.

Violence, and Silence, in Nelson's 'Paranoid Park'

Violence, and Silence, in Nelson's 'Paranoid Park'

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Blake Nelson is the author of eight novels for adults and young adults. Courtesy of Writers House hide caption

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Courtesy of Writers House

In Blake Nelson's novel, Paranoid Park, a 16-year-old skateboarder is on hand when a transit cop dies at the local skate park.

(As critic David Edelstein wrote in his review of Gus Van Sant's recently released film version, "Alex was at the scene of the death — although guilt or innocence are inadequate to describe what he did.")

After the incident, Alex withdraws into silence rather than report the crime to authorities.

Nelson is the author of eight books, including They Came From Below, Exile and Girl. He talks to Terry Gross about the inspiration for the novel, which owes a debt to Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment, and about writing in the world of young-adult literature.

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Paranoid Park
By Blake Nelson

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Paranoid Park
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