Mark’s #29: The Catcher In The Rye, by J.D. Salinger (222 pages)

As I sit down to write this short post, my wife warns me, “You know that book is a classic. You can’t say anything bad about it, it will make you look stupid.”

Hmmm…. I’ll try my best to not look like an idiot….

Written in 1951, this is a ‘classic’ book about teenage angst, rebellion, and cynical adolescence.  The story follows two days in the life of 16-year-old Holden Caufield right after he get’s get out of prep school.   It’s written from an autobiographical perspective.  As such, like many 16-year-olds, Holden seems to have a high view of his own wisdom and insights on people, relationships, and life in general.

As the story progresses, the reader begins to see a bit behind the veil into the insecurities and lostness of the kid.  Everywhere he goes he seems to run into some kind of conflict – always the result of others actions, not his of course.

I had a hard time with this novel. Probably because, as my wife implied, I’m not well trained with the ‘classics’ yet, thus, I’m an idiot.  I found the plot to be a bit too nebulous.  I was hoping that he would at least finally make the call to the girl he seemed to love – he didn’t.

Perhaps I just need to talk to english teachers Ron and my mother-in-law Brenda to enlighten me.

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