"There's no catch. Tracy Daugherty has written a generous, smart and comprehensive biography of a 21st Century American master. "—Gary Shteyngart
"Just One Catch is a truly smart and compelling biography of a major American writer. Joseph Heller wrote our greatest war novel and made a lasting contribution to the idiom, but he was also a singular figure through decades of cultural transformation. Tracy Daughtery deftly situates Heller's role in the American saga while never losing sight of the man, his grand literary quest, his huge personality, his politics, his passions, his weaknesses and kindnesses, his appetites.”—Sam Lipsyte
“Just One Catch is not only an intricate and compassionate portrait of its subject, but also an absorbing account of the genesis of the novel that irrevocably transformed mid-20th century American discourse. And even more than that, it’s a revelatory and moving social history: a reminder of a now-vanished culture in which the literary and the political informed one another in the most crucial and formative ways.”—Jim Shepard
“In addition to chronicling the life of an iconic American novelist, it also provides a kind of literary equivalent to TV's Mad Men, pulling the reader into a world that eerily replicates our own, even as we thought we'd left that world long ago. The pleasure of reading this biography is in Daugherty's ability to both frighten and reassure us that history does indeed repeat itself. Which information is a real catch 22.”—Antonya Nelson
"Catch-22 is the great comic American novel of the 20th century. Tracy Daugherty has given us a biography worthy of its author. A major achievement, or should I say major major major?"—Christopher Buckley
“A masterful, wonderfully thought-provoking biography about one of America’s greatest contributors to 20th century literature. Both touching and illuminating, this is that rare biography worthy of its source material.”—Stan Lee
TRACY DAUGHERTY is the author of four novels, four short story collections, and a book of personal essays. His critically acclaimed biography of Donald Barthelme, HIDING MAN was published in 2009. He has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. Currently, he is Distinguished Professor of English and Creative Writing at Oregon State University.
His brief analyses of the books are excellent and to the point.
This is my favorite book of all time, and I've read it at least once every year since, my original high school paperback shredded, almost every page of it highlighted.
When late in his life the Library of Congress chose the six best books ever written, Heller's "Catch-22" was up there with Melville and four other long-dead authors.
Reading a book is like watching a movie, or eating food. It is all in the mind of the beholder. Others can tell you that they enjoyed it, but you are your own unique self. Read morePublished 1 month ago by wise buyer
Can't tell if I am reading about Tracy Daugherty or Joseph Heller.
Curious, too, that most reviews here are from vine participants.
Great read. Joseph Heller is one of my favorite authors and this biography added greatly to my appreciation of him.Published 8 months ago by Fred Hanley
The best biography I've read in years, going to the heart of Joe's psychology, every detail of his life and an incredibly detailed and perceptive look into the publishing industry... Read morePublished 18 months ago by Irwin A. Weisberg
Not only has the Amazon marketplace seem to have spoken but the larger audience seems to have finished with this book. It appears to be going out of print. Read morePublished 19 months ago by Phred
When I read Catch 22 the only war that the U.S. had been involved in during my lifetime was Vietnam. Read morePublished on May 23, 2012 by Louie's Mom
Exploring writer's lives can be a dull undertaking. They create a world in which is imagined and often they are attempting to escape their own. Read morePublished on January 3, 2012 by Dr. Wilson Trivino
Was there ever a less pretentious "literary" author than Joseph Heller? When asked what motivated him to write Catch 22, his classic satire that is generally regarded as the... Read morePublished on November 9, 2011 by Brian W. Fairbanks
Joseph Heller was one of those writers who defined post-World War II American literature and, more broadly, American culture. Read morePublished on September 21, 2011 by Yalensian