J.D. Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye

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Sarah Graham
Routledge, 2007 - Literary Collections - 128 pages
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J.D. Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye (1951) is a twentieth-century classic. Despite being one of the most frequently banned books in America, generations of readers have identified with the narrator, Holden Caulfield, an angry young man who articulates the confusion, cynicism and vulnerability of adolescence with humour and sincerity.

This guide to Salinger's provocative novel offers:

  • an accessible introduction to the text and contexts of The Catcher in the Rye
  • a critical history, surveying the many interpretations of the text from publication to the present
  • a selection of new critical essays on the The Catcher in the Rye, by Sally Robinson, Renee R. Curry, Denis Jonnes, Livia Hekanaho and Clive Baldwin, providing a range of perspectives on the novel and extending the coverage of key critical approaches identified in the survey section
  • cross-references between sections of the guide, in order to suggest links between texts, contexts and criticism
  • suggestions for further reading.

Part of the Routledge Guides to Literature series, this volume is essential reading for all those beginning detailed study of The Catcher in the Rye and seeking not only a guide to the novel, but a way through the wealth of contextual and critical material that surrounds Salinger's text.

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Considering this is supposedly a "classic" piece of literature, I was sorely disappointed in this book. To me it was pure nonsense and a complete waste of time that cannot be redeemed. While there are those who continue to wax eloquent on this work for numerous reasons, let it be said that there are many others with an opposing point of view. Should you begin reading the first paragraph or two and think to yourself, "This is most ridiculous," please believe me when I say you will not change your mind if you happen to make it to the end. It does not get any better, only much worse. Save yourself the aggravation and just close the book immediately. Utter waste of time. No redeeming value whatsoever.  

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About the author (2007)

Sarah Graham is a lecturer in American literature at the University of Leicester. She is particularly interested in 20th century American novels and poetry, especially in relation to sexuality, gender and trauma theory.

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