This is already my second time reading this book since I found it earlier this year. Once I read it the first time from the library, I decided it was one that needed a spot on my bookshelf. Definitely a book on my favorites list, and it will probably remain there because it is so timeless.
I don’t think this will be a book review so much as a recommendation. READ THIS BOOK.
First, I’ll give you a little history. It was written in 1951 and continued throughout the years to earn a spot on the most banned book lists. Not only is it one of the most challenged books, it also made a place for itself as one of the most read books in schools due to its themes that are so prevalent in adolescents.
The Catcher in the Rye is a novel about a cynical teenager who has been kicked out of boarding school yet again and decides to skip out on his last few days and spend them in New York City. Holden, the main character, is just a normal teenage boy who goes on adventures in underground New York. The reader sees the world through Holden’s eyes and feels the impact of each event he goes through. The reader really gets to be inside of his head. It isn’t a book about action and suspense; it’s a book about alienation and the emotions that rage through every teenager.
The book doesn’t focus on what happens to Holden. It focuses on how he takes the events. Sometimes, people get sad for no reason. Sometimes, you feel lonely and just need to talk to somebody. These themes speak to adolescents and adults everywhere because they are still true today. People have always and probably will always have thoughts of alienation and doubts and wondering if they belong. It’s human natures, and J.D. Salinger weaves these issues flawlessly into a brilliant book filled with humor.
I love this book. I have little pieces of paper stuck into the pages where there are passages I reread over and over again. Some of them are just hilarious, and some of them just ring the truth. All the phrases Holden uses amuse me also. For instance, he says things like “I got a bang out of that” and “that killed me.” Everything about this novel feels so real and so contemporary. I especially love reading it out loud (minus all the cursing) because you can practically hear someone saying those exact words. It has a unique conversationalist writing style.
READ READ READ THIS BOOK!! Trust me, you won’t regret it. Don’t let the age turn you off from it. I procrastinated reading it for a while because I figured it would be a grueling classic with proper language and a difficult plot to follow. Instead, I got one of my favorite books ever. If you look past the 50’s setting, it could have been written yesterday.
If this book isn’t in your collection already, it needs to be!