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The Catcher in the Rye

by

The Catcher in the Rye Cover

ISBN13: 9780316769488
ISBN10: 0316769487
Condition: Standard
All Product Details

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Ever since it was first published in 1951, this novel has been the coming-of-age story against which all others are judged. Read and cherished by generations, the story of Holden Caulfield is truly one of America's literary treasures.

Review:

"Repetitive, indecent, often very funny, it is wonderfully sustained by the author, who achieves all those ancient effects to be got from a hero who is in some ways inferior, and in some ways superior, to the reader....Why, then, with all this to admire, do I find something phoney in the book itself?....[T]he adult view of adolescence, insinuated by skillful faking, is agreeable to predictable public taste....[It] is what the consumer needs....The boy's attitudes to religion, authority, art, sex and so on are what smart people would like other people to have, but cannot have themselves, because of their superior understanding." Frank Kermode, Review from Spectator, 05/30/1958

Synopsis:

Anyone who has read J.D. Salinger's New Yorker stories ? particularly A Perfect Day for Bananafish, Uncle Wiggily in Connecticut, The Laughing Man, and For Esme ? With Love and Squalor, will not be surprised by the fact that his first novel is fully of children. The hero-narrator of THE CATCHER IN THE RYE is an ancient child of sixteen, a native New Yorker named Holden Caulfield. Through circumstances that tend to preclude adult, secondhand description, he leaves his prep school in Pennsylvania and goes underground in New York City for three days. The boy himself is at once too simple and too complex for us to make any final comment about him or his story. Perhaps the safest thing we can say about Holden is that he was born in the world not just strongly attracted to beauty but, almost, hopelessly impaled on it. There are many voices in this novel: children's voices, adult voices, underground voices-but Holden's voice is the most eloquent of all. Transcending his own vernacular, yet remaining marvelously faithful to it, he issues a perfectly articulated cry of mixed pain and pleasure. However, like most lovers and clowns and poets of the higher orders, he keeps most of the pain to, and for, himself. The pleasure he gives away, or sets aside, with all his heart. It is there for the reader who can handle it to keep.

Synopsis:

Holden, knowing he is to be expelled from school, decides to leave early. He spends three days in New York City and tells the story of what he did and suffered there.

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Average customer rating based on 23 comments:

nbrusherd, January 23, 2012 (view all comments by nbrusherd)
Awesome. Classic.
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(6 of 14 readers found this comment helpful)
Kate Warlothstar, May 15, 2011 (view all comments by Kate Warlothstar)
Most authors hope to capture their reader’s hearts through specific literary techniques. In The Catcher in The Rye, the author, J.D. Salinger, successfully suggests the idea of alienation as self-protection through Holden Caulfield’s wild adventure and relationships with people. Ultimately, J.D. Salinger elaborates upon the issue of how identity affects humans and their progression, but weakens the different views of the conflict though his lack of perspective and point-of-view.
This novel was published in 1946 of December. During this time period, the war was ending and people were hoping for a better life than what they had possessed with the Great Depression and worldwide poverty. The reason The Catcher in The Rye contains a slight downfall during this time frame was because the point-of-view is seen through an adolescent boy, Holden Caulfield. But as the same time is explicates why the book became so popular. Not only did adults suffer from this time, but children did as well. Having a story told through a sixteen year olds perspective illuminates how children were affected by this era and how alienation as self-protection affected them.
Holden Caulfield explains “I’ll just tell you about this madman stuff that happened to me around last Christmas just before I got pretty run-down and had to come out here and take it easy” (1). The novel begins on a Saturday subsequent to the end of classes at Pencey Prep School in Agerstown, Pennsylvania. This is Holden’s fourth school he has been expelled from and he dreads every moment of going home. He spends his time doing a variety of things in order to avoid his current problem. Such as: visiting his old teacher, reviews his relationship with his roommate, Stradlater, travels to Manhattan to stay in a hotel, and visits many different type of people along the way. The story ends as Holden tell his sister that he is going to leave forever. As his sister, Phoebe arrives with a suitcase for her to run away with him, and they both begin to cry. Holden buys tickets for them to go to the zoo and as he watches Phoebe, it starts to rain and he realizes the happiness within him and remains cautiously optimistic about what the future has left to hold for him.
The theme displayed in the novel is the use of alienation as self-protection. Holden appears to be excluded from society and mistreated by the world around him. He almost considers himself trapped on “the other side” of existence and frequently tries to locate his way in a humanity he does not feel as if he belongs within. As the novel continues, the reader is able to recognize the isolation Holden encloses is his way of defending himself. As Holden interacts with people, it typically confuses and overwhelms him and fights it with is sense of self-protection. An example of what his isolation brings to him is “I looked out the window for a while, with my coat on and all. I did not have anything else to do” (61). He becomes extremely bored and never directly addresses his emotions so he can figure out his problems. He desperately longs for human contact and love but by shielding barrier he holds up from people makes it impossible for him to have any positive interactions. Alienation is enhanced through Holden’s strengths and limitations. For example he desires to be with Salley Hayes, but his need to be separated from people causes him to insult her and rive him away from having an intimate relationship.
Overall the book is a successful piece of art because of the interesting messages it brings about through Holden Caulfield’s character and past. When someone comes to a realization of how his or her identity is made though so many rational decisions, then the novel is concluded as effective. The coming of age and transitioning from a child to an adult is a difficult situation and the book explains the consequences involved with dwelling on the past and childhood. The book’s point-of-view serves as the books only downfall because it closes the perspective interpreted. All the detail Holden provides obliges as a unique tool in really getting into what the character is feeling which a vital part in understanding what literatures meaning is So much of the classics children have to read today are filtered with such difficult language to read. The Catcher in The Rye will stay in the future because it teaches a great message though fascinating story children will understand and want to learn.
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Taylor Kuehl, May 15, 2011 (view all comments by Taylor Kuehl)
In the novel The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger the statement of running from the inevitable is exemplified. The protagonist, Holden Caulfield, highlights the negative impact of one trying to escape from adulthood and resist change. Though growing up is a part of everyone’s lives, Holden wants to protect himself from what he believes is a society filled with “phony” (3) people. Salinger’s use of the literary techniques of narrative perspective and structure contribute to the study of this literature piece within schools across the world today. Considered a classic novel in American literature, The Catcher in the Rye teaches life lessons about growing up and letting one’s self-protection down in order to find true happiness. Through the protagonists main lack of trust in others and isolation from the social world, Holden Caulfield portrays an adolescent struggling to fit in. His experiences with different schools, classmates and locations impact the decisions he makes throughout his journey to self-discovery.
The novel occurs mainly in two different locations, Pency Prep and New York City. The novel starts out by Caulfield recalling his life as a teenager, specifically at the school Pency Prep. But just as soon as the narrator lets us know he attended Pency Prep, the reader immediately finds out that he is getting kicked out of school. After being kicked out of school, Holden decides to go to New York for a few days, where he can stay in a hotel rather than face his parents and tell them the news of his expulsion. Though the stories that are being told take place over a mere three days, Holden flashbacks to earlier years growing up. The setting changes from Pency Prep to New York City, however, Holden still feels isolated. The geographical setting does nothing more than merely allow Holden to tell stories about a variety of persons and attitudes that he dislikes. “New York’s terrible when somebody laughs on the street very late at night. You can hear it for miles. It makes you feel so lonesome and depressed” (81). The novel reveals that though you can change locations as many times as one desires, he or she may not be able to escape loneliness and isolation.
The organization and narrative perspective that J.D. Saligner uses within the novel contributes to a better understanding of the character Holden Caulfield. The main points of the novel arise from the different experiences that Holden Caulfield has overcome as he’s grown up. Going through the difficulty of losing his brother, Allie, to “leukemia” (38), being kicked out of school and struggling to fit into a social world, is tough. However, the ways in which Holden Caulfield deals with these difficulties is even harder for a reader to understand to some extent. Caulfield’s issue with the word “please” (211) and his stubbornness to listen to people are revealed clearly through first person point of view. Holden Caulfield’s thoughts and emotions are expressed through his experiences growing up. The reader is able to feel what Holden is going through during his complications and learn more about Holden’s character. The reader becomes interested in what Holden Caulfield thinks of the people and situations that arise before him at all times. He is retelling his journey through the use of flashbacks and reflecting on the mental impact of what he has been through. When the reader finds out that Holden Caulfield is telling the story from a mental hospital or sanatorium, he or she is not as surprised due to the actions and thoughts of the young boy that are revealed through his narration.
J.D. Salinger’s literary novel The Catcher in the Rye is a successful piece of literature. It is a novel that can easily be related to, especially by high school students like myself. However, it is a beneficial book for one to read at any age due to the fact that it is a humbling story about one’s coming of age. It can be interpreted in a variety of ways, many relating back to the characteristics of Holden Caulfield. Holden Caulfield is a privileged adolescent who lacks the work ethic to be successful. His careless decisions seem somewhat selfish because he has the opportunity to make better choices. In most cases, it seems as though when Holden is confronted with the choice to take one step forward or two steps backwards, he chooses to move in the backward direction. Personally, I frequently see decisions being made like Holden’s in society today. Sometimes it is so easier to dwell on the negative aspects of life and forget about the opportunity one has to improve on them. Unlike Holden, I try to make the best of every situation and I believe work ethic has the ability to get one far in life. It was interesting to read a novel with a character that seems to contrast myself quite a bit. I sometimes found it hard to imagine a life like Holden’s, where believing the advice of all adults is “phony” (3) and always “feeling so damn depressed and lonesome” (153). However, unlike Holden I have never experienced a death within my immediate family. I try to imagine how hard it would be to lose a family member, yet I understand that I cannot fully grasp the situation having not experienced it. I believe Holden Caulfield is the way he is due to loss. Holden isolates himself from the world because no longer does he want to be faced with losing close companions one day.
The novel The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger represents the struggle to self-discovery. Holden Caulfield’s experiences as a teenager have shaped the way in which he views the world. Caulfield’s refusal to grow up can be related to a wide variety of reader’s. Salinger teaches the reader that in order to achieve happiness sometimes, one must allow other’s in.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780316769488
Author:
Salinger, J. D.
Publisher:
Little, Brown and Company
Author:
Salinger, J. D.
Location:
Boston
Subject:
General
Subject:
Fiction
Subject:
Classics
Subject:
Novels and novellas
Subject:
American fiction (fictional works by one author)
Subject:
New York
Subject:
Salinger, j. d. (jerome david), 1919-
Subject:
Runaway teenagers
Subject:
Caulfield, Holden
Subject:
Bildungsromane.
Subject:
New York (N.Y.) Fiction.
Subject:
New york (n.y.)
Subject:
Bildungsromans
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Subject:
Alienation; Self-discovery; Teenagers; Teenage angst; Emotional isolation; Search for truth
Copyright:
Edition Description:
1st LB Books mass market paperback ed.
Series Volume:
v. 17S1E
Publication Date:
19910501
Binding:
Paperback
Language:
English
Pages:
224
Dimensions:
6.78x4.34x.60 in. .25 lbs.

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Product details 224 pages Little Brown and Company - English 9780316769488 Reviews:
"Review" by , "Repetitive, indecent, often very funny, it is wonderfully sustained by the author, who achieves all those ancient effects to be got from a hero who is in some ways inferior, and in some ways superior, to the reader....Why, then, with all this to admire, do I find something phoney in the book itself?....[T]he adult view of adolescence, insinuated by skillful faking, is agreeable to predictable public taste....[It] is what the consumer needs....The boy's attitudes to religion, authority, art, sex and so on are what smart people would like other people to have, but cannot have themselves, because of their superior understanding."
"Synopsis" by , Anyone who has read J.D. Salinger's New Yorker stories ? particularly A Perfect Day for Bananafish, Uncle Wiggily in Connecticut, The Laughing Man, and For Esme ? With Love and Squalor, will not be surprised by the fact that his first novel is fully of children. The hero-narrator of THE CATCHER IN THE RYE is an ancient child of sixteen, a native New Yorker named Holden Caulfield. Through circumstances that tend to preclude adult, secondhand description, he leaves his prep school in Pennsylvania and goes underground in New York City for three days. The boy himself is at once too simple and too complex for us to make any final comment about him or his story. Perhaps the safest thing we can say about Holden is that he was born in the world not just strongly attracted to beauty but, almost, hopelessly impaled on it. There are many voices in this novel: children's voices, adult voices, underground voices-but Holden's voice is the most eloquent of all. Transcending his own vernacular, yet remaining marvelously faithful to it, he issues a perfectly articulated cry of mixed pain and pleasure. However, like most lovers and clowns and poets of the higher orders, he keeps most of the pain to, and for, himself. The pleasure he gives away, or sets aside, with all his heart. It is there for the reader who can handle it to keep.
"Synopsis" by , Holden, knowing he is to be expelled from school, decides to leave early. He spends three days in New York City and tells the story of what he did and suffered there.
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