Alisha Marie's Reviews > The Catcher in the Rye

The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
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's review
Oct 03, 2009

it was ok
bookshelves: classics, books-i-own-that-i-ve-read
Read in January, 2011

I don't get it... I don't get why The Catcher in the Rye is supposed to be this great, amazing, classic. Did it go over my head? Is The Catcher in the Rye really this amazing book that provides insight into teenage alienation? Or is it really just a substandard book? The answer to this question is a matter of opinion. And in my opinion, the first theory is a load of crap.

First of all, if Holden was even alienated, it was by his own doing. Everyone was a moron. Everyone and everything was STUPID! Everyone was a phony. Everyone, but Holden himself, of course. Holden was the most real guy that you will ever meet. Or at least he is, according to his delusions. Holden was a hypocrite and the biggest phony in The Catcher in the Rye. He was a pathological liar. Was THIS the point of the show how alienation affects teens so bad that they become flaming hypocrites, and issue-infested liars?

Holden Caufield was also bratty and pretentious. His so-called "astute" observations were average and typical (were they supposed to be some inner look into the mind of an unapplied genius? Because I so didn't get that) and more often than not kind of boring. His observations also made me roll my eyes quite a bit. And man, was he repetitive! He mentioned the same sentence twice (and even three times) in the same paragraph.

So why did I give The Catcher in the Rye two stars instead of the dreaded one? Well, this book was written in a fairly breezy, easy to read style. That's important to me when I'm reading a classic. Sure, it's all fine and dandy to admire the semi-dry writing of the classic writers, but if it takes me a half hour to read a page, some of the pleasure fades. That was the good thing about this book. It was easy to understand. Too bad that my understanding is that this book is a bit overrated. In fact, I understand why it's heralded as the book of the sociopaths. I'm not saying that everyone who enjoys the book is a sociopath, but I can see why sociopaths love it.

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