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The Catcher in the Rye Mass Market Paperback – May 1, 1991
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100 Young Adult Books to Read in a Lifetime
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"If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you'll probably want to know is where I was born and what my lousy childhood was like, and how my parents were occupied and all before they had me, and all that David Copperfield kind of crap, but I don't feel like going into it, if you want to know the truth. In the first place, that stuff bores me, and in the second place, my parents would have about two hemorrhages apiece if I told anything pretty personal about them."
His constant wry observations about what he encounters, from teachers to phonies (the two of course are not mutually exclusive) capture the essence of the eternal teenage experience of alienation. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Salinger, whose characters are among the best and most developed in all of literature has captured the eternal angst of growing into adulthood in the person of Holden Caulfield. Anyone who has reached the age of sixteen will be able to identify with this unique and yet universal character, for Holden contains bits and pieces of all of us. It is for this very reason that The Catcher in the Rye has become one of the most beloved and enduring works in world literature.
As always, Salinger's writing is so brilliant, his characters so real, that he need not employ artifice of any kind. This is a study of the complex problems haunting all adolescents as they mature into adulthood and Salinger wisely chooses to keep his narrative and prose straightforward and simple.
This is not to say that The Catcher in the Rye is a straightforward and simple book. It is anything but. In it we are privy to Salinger's genius and originality in portraying universal problems in a unique manner. The Catcher in the Rye is a book that can be loved and understood on many different levels of comprehension and each reader who experiences it will come away with a fresh view of the world in which they live.
A work of true genius, images of a catcher in the rye are abundantly apparent throughout this book.Read more ›
Others have written more "shocking" books or have been more overtly anti-social, but with The Catcher In The Rye, J.D. Salinger captures the bitterly confused mind of a youth who hates the whole world not because the world is worth hating, but because he's frustrated at his own inability to get along in that world, with such crisp reality that it shocks far more than any fantastical American Psycho.
Reading over the negative reviews on Amazon, I can't help but wonder how and why so many people are so unable to get it. The Catcher In The Rye is among the, if not the, most tangibly realistic looks into the mind of a disaffected, disillusioned youth suffering from depression (and a touch of the bipolar). The way Holden Caulfield's mind works is incredibly true to form - the contradictions, the hypocrisy, the confusion, the brief moments of sheer clarity followed by stretches of irrational thought. He thinks he's better than the world, and he thinks he's the lousiest person in the world at the same time. He wants everyone to go away and leave him alone, and he can't bear anyone, not even some schmuck he really dislikes (with good reason), to leave him. He's nothing but hypocrisy and contradictions and confusion. Salinger captures this in an amazing way.
People criticize the book because Caulfield is totally unlikable, a guy who rails against phonies when he himself is something of a phony ... but that's part of the point. Holden throws off all the signals someone in his situation actually throws off in real life, and just like real life, they're almost always ignored.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Was great to re-read this. At school we studied it but 30 odd years on I enjoyed it even more.Published 1 day ago by Amazon Customer
Just read it, maybe? No one can tell you what you'll enjoy. you'll have to risk a few bucks to find out.Published 2 days ago by Corey Nettles
In J.D. Salinger's brilliant coming-of-age novel, Holden Caulfield, a seventeen year old prep school adolescent relates his lonely, life-changing twenty-four hour stay in New York... Read morePublished 3 days ago by Hershey baum
incredible, awesome, insightful, should be read by every young person and adult as well.Published 4 days ago by Laura Henry
What's not to love about Holden Caulfield, perhaps one of the first and most distinct voices in young literature? Read morePublished 4 days ago by MomReaderShopperNJ
What can I say about a classic like this. It shows you who someone feels, how they work their way through life for better or worse.Published 5 days ago by JNC
The most timeless slice of adolescent angst ever committed to paper. A masterpiece. I first met Holden Caulfield when I was 11 years old, and we have been friends ever since. Read morePublished 8 days ago by Special K