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Catch-22

by

Catch-22 Cover

ISBN13: 9781451626650
ISBN10: 1451626657
All Product Details

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Fifty years after its original publication, Catch-22 remains a cornerstone of American literature and one of the funniest — and most celebrated — books of all time. In recent years it has been named to “best novels” lists by Time, Newsweek, the Modern Library, and the London Observer.

Set in Italy during World War II, this is the story of the incomparable, malingering bombardier, Yossarian, a hero who is furious because thousands of people he has never met are trying to kill him. But his real problem is not the enemy — it is his own army, which keeps increasing the number of missions the men must fly to complete their service. Yet if Yossarian makes any attempt to excuse himself from the perilous missions he’s assigned, he’ll be in violation of Catch-22, a hilariously sinister bureaucratic rule: a man is considered insane if he willingly continues to fly dangerous combat missions, but if he makes a formal request to be removed from duty, he is proven sane and therefore ineligible to be relieved.

This fiftieth-anniversary edition commemorates Joseph Heller’s masterpiece with a new introduction by Christopher Buckley; a wealth of critical essays and reviews by Norman Mailer, Alfred Kazin, Anthony Burgess, and others; rare papers and photos from Joseph Heller’s personal archive; and much more. Here, at last, is the definitive edition of a classic of world literature.

Review:

"Catch-22 is the only war novel I've ever read that makes any sense." Harper Lee

Review:

"One of the most bitterly funny works in the language....Explosive, bitter, subversive, brilliant." The New Republic

Review:

"To my mind, there have been two great American novels in the past fifty years. Catch-22 is one." Stephen King, Entertainment Weekly

Review:

"This novel is not merely the best American novel to come out of World War II, it is the best American novel that has come out of anywhere in years." The Nation

Review:

"It's the rock and roll of novels....There's no book like it....Surprisingly powerful." Norman Mailer, Esquire

Review:

"One of the greatest anti-war books ever written." Vanity Fair

Synopsis:

A fiftieth anniversary edition of Catch-22, one of the twentieth century's most revered novels.

About the Author

Joseph Heller was born in Brooklyn in 1923. In 1961, he published Catch-22, which became a bestseller and, in 1970, a film. He went on to write such novels as Good as Gold, God Knows, Picture This, Closing Time (the sequel to Catch-22), and Portrait of an Artist, as an Old Man. Heller died in December 1999.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 2 comments:

Isaac Leif, November 21, 2014 (view all comments by Isaac Leif)
Catch-22 was a unique addition to my personal library. As someone who isn’t big on historical war fiction, I expected a bit of confusion and disinterest on my side prior to beginning the novel. In the opening, I definitely got confused. Heller somewhat throws the reader into a messy situation. I would expect a war novel to open with a gory battle scene, perhaps a protagonist’s best friend is killed - a gripping hook doubtlessly. However, Heller decides to open in a hospital, stating “It was love at first sight. The first time Yossarian saw the chaplain he fell madly in love with him.” (1). This is the antithesis of what I expected. Chaplains? I didn’t expect religion to be a part of this war setting. Love? Get that out of here; this is about guns and death. But this abrupt introduction prepares the reader perfectly for Heller’s writing style through the story.
Did I enjoy the book? Absolutely. It was a slight challenge to really get into the book. For a large part of the story, I struggled to patch connections together and felt like I had a loose understanding of the characters. I also had difficulty figuring out what to focus on. Which chapter discussed the main plot and what was just details that were secondary? Luckily, as the reader approaches the end, it all comes together. At first, it’s subtle; barely noticeable. But the connections gradually increase. I read the final 70 pages all in one sitting, which is abnormal for me. By the end, most of the questions that I had from earlier chapters were filled in. That was a really great thing to see.
Enough about the plotline. Let’s discuss the book and its literary value. It’s definitely strong on motifs and themes. The main one appears to be the concept of catch-22. If you like thinking about paradoxes, this book will fit you. For example: “ ‘You’re the new squadron commander,’ Colonel Cathcart had shouted rudely across the railroad ditch to him. ‘But don’t think it means anything, because it doesn’t. All it means is that you’re the new squadron commander.’ “ (88). It’s also bursting with symbols. It seems that every character is symbolizing something, such as capitalism, upper-management incapabilities, or the relationship between life and death.
The novel also has its fair share of borderline-witty, memorable quotes. For example, Yossarian and a lady friend of his argue about appreciation. “ ‘Be thankful you’re healthy.’ ‘Be bitter you’re not going to stay that way.’ ‘Be glad you’re even alive.’ ‘Be furious you’re going to die.’ ‘Things could be much worse,’ she cried. ‘They could be one hell of a lot better,’ he answered heatedly.” (178-179). Humor, sometimes darker, like this is found through the book, which is enjoyable. Again, it just isn’t what I would expect from a book about World War II.
In the end, my only complaints are about the novel’s length, and its ability to cause me confusion. Some parts of the story read relatively slowly versus others. However, I expect this to be Heller’s intention. If you find yourself in this situation, push through it. Pay attention! Persevere! The reading pays off and finishing it is absolutely satisfying.
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Jean Bees, November 13, 2014 (view all comments by Jean Bees)
My favorite book.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9781451626650
Author:
Heller, Joseph
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster
Author:
Buckley, Christopher
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade Paperback
Publication Date:
20110405
Binding:
Paperback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
544
Dimensions:
8.44 x 5.5 in

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Related Subjects

Featured Titles » General
Featured Titles » Literature
Featured Titles » World Book Night 2014
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Satire

Catch-22 New Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$17.00 In Stock
Product details 544 pages Simon & Schuster - English 9781451626650 Reviews:
"Review" by , "Catch-22 is the only war novel I've ever read that makes any sense."
"Review" by , "One of the most bitterly funny works in the language....Explosive, bitter, subversive, brilliant."
"Review" by , "To my mind, there have been two great American novels in the past fifty years. Catch-22 is one."
"Review" by , "This novel is not merely the best American novel to come out of World War II, it is the best American novel that has come out of anywhere in years."
"Review" by , "It's the rock and roll of novels....There's no book like it....Surprisingly powerful."
"Review" by , "One of the greatest anti-war books ever written."
"Synopsis" by , A fiftieth anniversary edition of Catch-22, one of the twentieth century's most revered novels.
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