Friday, September 08, 2006

Catcher in the Rye

I'm moving right along with my Young Adult reading list and so far, it's been pretty enjoyable. Some have been re-reads like "Fahrenheit 451", which is still a good book, but that ending has some problems! I've read some Avi, who I suspect is not one man, but a team of people writing under one name a la V.C. Andrews and Shakespeare. "The Chocolate War" was a good re-read. Lois Duncan's "I Know What You Did Last Summer" was a really good book and a lot better than that crappy movie they made from it! And I really liked "The Outsiders". I can't believe I've never read it before.

The book I just finished was "Catcher in the Rye" and I came to it with an open mind, because even though I couldn't remember one thing that happened in the book, I did recall that I didn't like it. But that was a long time ago and I was a different person. Let's see what maturity and an education will bring to it, I said to myself. But I'm sorry, I still can't stand it. It is probably the most annoying book I've read in a very long time. Now my man here is defending it to the hilt and I see all his points and I appreciate it. Yes, it's a device, there's a pattern, there's a rhythm... I get it. And yes, Holden is only 16, so his thoughts would be jumbled and repetitive. Yeah, yeah, yeah. And Holden is mentally ill, getting worse each day. Okay, fine. And look at the year it was written, 1945, what a break through piece of literature, nothing had been written like it before! Blah, blah, blah! It's no good! I do appreciate all that, I really do. But it's still a complete drag to read. I literally trudged through it, like a soldier through mud. E kept saying, just stop, you don't have to finish it, but once I start a book, I've got to see it through, to see if it redeems itself. And near the end came the only part that made me smile: When Holden was talking about what would end up written on his tombstone. That killed me, it really did. But that's the problem. Everyone telling you something is so great. I hate it when someone calls something a classic. Anyone who calls that book a classic is a phony. It depresses the hell out of me.

3 comments:

Nance said...

This breaks my heart. Come to my class this May when I teach it. You'll love it (and Holden) then. I promise.

Weaver Brewer & Fam said...

I've never read the book, but in the case of "classics" I always like to remember that the term classic doesn't equal "good" :)

Weaver Brewer & Fam said...

Brewer here:
I totally agree tha Cather is a POS. I also group in to this list of "awesome classics" MOBY DICK. I completely hate this POS!!!