Sometimes I think it’s easier to write a negative review than it is to write a positive one. Don’t even get me started on a book I hated. I can talk for hours about everything that’s wrong with a book, but when it comes to a book I loved, I almost always draw a blank. I mean, how am I supposed to put into words everything that I loved about this book? I’ve reviewed close to 600 books over the years, but today, I seem to have forgotten how.
Maybe I should start by saying that I last read this book back in (probably) 2006 when I was a teenager with bad taste. I say “a teenager with bad taste” because, let’s be honest, I thought Twilight was the best thing I’d ever read and I was unimpressed with this book. Thankfully, Daniel asked me if I wanted to do a buddy re-read of The Catcher in the Rye and I said yes. It ended up being a great decision all around. I’d like to issue a formal apology to J.D. Salinger for all of the years I spent thinking I didn’t really like this book. I was wrong.
Why do I love Holden so much? I don’t remember thinking anything about him the first time, but he’s pretty much my favorite literary character ever right now. I love his sarcasm, I love his exaggerations, and I love how honest he is. I love how much he loves his sister. I love how he talks about Jane. I love how he sits down with a couple nuns in a train station and discusses Romeo and Juliet. All I want is to give him a hug and tell him that everything is going to be okay.
- “I’m pretty sure he yelled ‘Good luck!’ at me. I hope not. I hope to hell not. I’d never yell ‘Good luck!’ at anybody. It sounds terrible, when you think about it.”
- “He was one of those guys that think they’re being a pansy if they don’t break around forty of your fingers when they shake hands with you.”
- “What I think is, you’re supposed to leave somebody alone if he’s at least being interesting and he’s getting all excited about something. I like it when somebody gets excited about something. It’s nice.”
- “Certain things they should stay the way they are. You ought to be able to stick them in one of those big glass cases and just leave them alone.”
- “People are mostly hot to have a discussion when you’re not.”
- “Don’t tell anybody anything. If you do, you start missing everybody.”
I don’t think there’s actually anything about this book that I didn’t like.
Have you read The Catcher in the Rye? Do you love it or hate it?
Let’s talk in the comments!