Catcher in the Rye
214 pages Reissue
edition (May 1991)
Lb Books; ISBN:
Since his debut in 1951 as The Catcher in the Rye,
Holden Caulfield has been synonymous with "cynical adolescent."
Holden narrates the story of a couple of days in his sixteen-year-old
life, just after he's been expelled from prep school, in a
slang that sounds edgy even today and keeps this novel on
banned book lists. It begins,
"If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you'll
probably want to know is where I was born and what my lousy
childhood was like, and how my parents were occupied and all
before they had me, and all that David Copperfield kind of
crap, but I don't feel like going into it, if you want to
know the truth. In the first place, that stuff bores me, and
in the second place, my parents would have about two hemorrhages
apiece if I told anything pretty personal about them."
His constant wry observations about what he encounters,
from teachers to phonies (the two of course are not mutually
exclusive) capture the essence of the eternal teenage experience
July 16, 1951
of The Times
By NASH K. BURGER
It is just before Christmas and 16-year-old Holden Caulfield has
been kicked out of exclusive Pencey Prep, a boys' school in Pennsylvania.
Considering everything, this reflects more credit on Holden than
on Pencey. Life at Pencey is dreary, regimented, artificial and,
of course, expensive. This happens, however, to be only the latest
of a series of schools from which Holden has been expelled. Understandably
he is in no hurry to encounter his parents, but he is also reluctant
to linger a moment longer than necessary at Pencey. He therefore
takes what money he has and departs for New York, where he passes
several days in a weird jumble of adventures and experiences, is
involved with a variety of persons including taxi drivers, two nuns,
an elevator man, three girls from Seattle, a prostitute, and a former
teacher from whom Holden thinks it best to flee in the middle of
the night and most of all from himself. [read
- Brief Biography
of J. D. Salinger, A - includes answers to frequently asked
- Catcher in
the Rye, The - book review.
in the Rye: Reflections - essay about the book.
The Catcher in the Rye - indexes the book's almost one hundred
characters and the various topics.
Thoughts: J.D. Salinger - features excerpts from Franny and
- J. D. Salinger Bananafish
- bibliography, characters, opinions, anecdotes, and more.
- J.D. Salinger
- features biography and links to texts, reviews, and more.
Salinger and Catcher in The Rye Campfire Chat - a campfire
chat devoted to J.D. Salinger's works, ranging from The Catcher
in The Rye to Nine Stories.
Another Page on J.D.Salinger? - includes biography, quotes,