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text 2017-07-17 12:55
16th July 2017
The Catcher in the Rye - J.D. Salinger

Don't ever tell anybody anything. If you do, you start missing everybody. 

 

J.D. Salinger

 

July 16, 1951: J.D. Salinger's Catcher in the Rye was published 66 years ago today. The novel's title is actually a misquote of sorts—the result of narrator Holden Caulfield mishearing Robert Burns' poem, Comin thro' the Rye.

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review 2017-01-31 05:26
Rezension | Lieber Mr. Salinger von Joanna Rakoff
Lieber Mr. Salinger - Joanna Rakoff,Sabine Schwenk

Beschreibung

 

Direkt nach ihrer Uni-Zeit kehrt Joanna Rakoff in den 90er Jahren nach New York zurück um dort in der Literaturwelt Fuß zu fassen. Tatsächlich ergattert sie einen Job als Assistentin in einer Agentur, die wie aus einer längst vergangen Epoche entsprungen zu sein scheint. Joanna muss sich nicht nur auf das Tippen der über Diktafon diktierten Briefe auf einer nostalgischen Schreibmaschine einstellen, sondern sie bekommt auch noch spezielle Anweisungen von ihrer Chefin zu einem gewissen „Jerry“.

 

Erst später wird Joanna klar, dass es sich bei „Jerry“ um den weltbekannten Autor J. D. Salinger handelt, der durch die Agentur vertreten wird. Bisher hat Joanna noch nie ein Buch Salingers gelesen und sieht sich nun mit den Marotten dieses speziellen Autors, der weder seine Fanpost weitergeleitet bekommen möchte noch mit sonst jemanden in Kontakt treten möchte konfrontiert. Joanna bringt es nicht übers Herz die ganze Fanpost mit einem vorgefertigten Musterbrief zu beantworten und so liest sie die unzähligen Briefe an Salinger um diese persönlich zu beantworten.

 

Meine Meinung

 

Joanna Rackoff berichtet in ihrem autobiographischen Roman „Lieber Mr. Salinger“ von ihrem Jahr in einer New Yorker Agentur in den 90er Jahren.

 

Der flüssige Schreibstil entführt den Leser schnell in die aufregende Nach-Uni-Zeit, die Joanna Rackoff in ihrem ersten Jahr in einer New Yorker Agentur erlebte. Das ganze könnte man als eine Art Tagebuch betrachten, denn so ähnlich lässt sich dieser Roman lesen. In jahreszeitlichen Abschnitten erfährt man die wichtigsten Ereignisse in Joannas Leben, wobei ihre Arbeit eine große Rolle einnimmt. Die spezielle und sehr nostalgische Atmosphäre der Agentur gefällt mir auf Anhieb sehr gut. Ich empfand es außerdem als sehr interessant einen Blick hinter die Kulissen zu werfen und mehr über die Arbeit in einer Agentur zu erfahren und somit tiefer in die Welt der Literatur einzutauchen.

 

Schnell wird klar, dass Dreh- und Angelpunkt der ganzen Geschichte Mr. J. D. Saliger ist, und sich durch ihn und seine Werke so einiges in Joannas Leben verändert. Angefangen bei der Arbeit im Verlag, wo Joanna Telefonanrufe entgegennimmt und die Fanpost bearbeitet bis hin zu den Problemen in ihrem Leben. J. D. Salinger wird schon bald zu einem festen Bestandteil ihres Lebens, und das obwohl sie noch nie ein Buch des berühmten Autors gelesen hat. Als Joanna dies schließlich ändert, gelangt sie in ihrem Leben an einen Wendepunkt.

 

Mit Joanna konnte ich mich schnell identifizieren, denn genau wie sie habe ich bisher noch keines von Salingers Werken gelesen, obwohl mir zumindest der Titel „Der Fänger im Roggen“ schon das ein oder andere mal zu Ohren gekommen ist. Mehr möchte ich über die Geschichte an dieser Stelle nicht verraten.

 

Mich hat dieser kurzweilige Roman gut unterhalten und meine Lust auch einmal ein Buch von Salinger in die Hand zu nehmen definitiv geweckt! Ich vergebe für „Lieber Mr. Salinger“, der mich der Literaturwelt ein Stückchen näher gebracht hat, 4 von 5 Grinsekatzen.

 

Über die Autorin

 

Nach ihrem Studium an renommierten amerikanischen Universitäten stürzte sich Joanna Rakoff in die Welt der Literatur. Sie arbeitete als Kritikerin für die „New York Times“, die „Los Angeles Times“ und die „Vogue“ und veröffentlichte einen Roman („A Fortunate Age“), der zahlreiche Auszeichnungen erhielt. Joanna Rakoff lebt in Cambridge, Massachusetts. (Quelle: Albrecht Knaus Verlag)

 

Fazit

 

Eine Liebeserklärung an die Literatur an sich und J. D. Salinger im Speziellen.

Source: www.bellaswonderworld.de/rezensionen/rezension-lieber-mr-salinger-von-joanna-rackoff
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text 2016-11-18 18:43
Review: The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
The Catcher in the Rye - J.D. Salinger

Goodreads summary:

"The Catcher in the Rye" is J . D. Salinger's world-famous novel of disaffected youth. Holden Caulfield is a seventeen- year-old dropout who has just been kicked out of his fourth school. Navigating his way through the challenges of growing up, Holden dissects the 'phony' aspects of society, and the 'phonies' themselves: the headmaster whose affability depends on the wealth of the parents, his roommate who scores with girls using sickly-sweet affection. Written with the clarity of a boy leaving childhood behind, "The Catcher in the Rye" explores the world with disarming frankness and a warm, affecting charisma which has made this novel a universally loved classic of twentieth-century literature.

 

My opinion:

I surprisingly really liked this novel. It was a bit slow at the beginning, because Holden is very moody etc., but the writing style kept me going and I ended up really liking this novel. I do understand why this is a classic that most people in USA are required to read in school (I didn't read in school, so I picked it up because I wanted to), because you can learn something from it (or even realize something about life and/or society) and it's (I think) relatable to most teenagers as well. Everybody feels kinda depressed one in a while and thinks about dropping school. This is also a very accessible classic, because it's very easy and quick to read and feels like you're reading just a YA novel. And another reason why I think it's so relatable is because Salinger made the characters so very realistic (which I really loved). Oh and I personally also really liked Holden as a character (which is a very unpopular opinion I think?), even though he could be sometimes annoying to other characters. Those part where even funny to me. So if you like to read YA novels and want to try a classic: read this one! You can also read it if you usually don't read YA; this book is just for everybody. I personally really, really liked it and I'm glad I gave it a shot.

 

What is your opinion about this novel? Did you have to read this one for school or not?

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review 2016-10-09 17:15
THE CATCHER IN THE RYE by J. D. Salinger
The Catcher in the Rye - J.D. Salinger

I understand why you should not read this for the first time as an adult but my education was neglected in my teens, obviously, since I did not read it then.  Holden is a pain where the sun don't shine.  He is so whiny.  He acts as if he's seen everything, done everything, and knows everything but, as an adult, I want to shake him and tell him to wake up and look at how good he has it.  He is the epitome of the angsty teenager who can get on an adult's nerves.  He is never responsible for his actions.  It is always someone else. 

 

I have enjoyed Salinger's works in the past so I am glad I did not read this one first.  I may not have read any more of his works.  Although in fairness, I should have read this as a teenager to truly appreciate Holden.  It lost something in the last 40 years for me.

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review 2016-02-22 12:14
#CBR8 Book 19: The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
The Catcher in the Rye - J.D. Salinger

This review will contain spoilers, so if you want to avoid knowing all the details of the sparse and meaningless plot, maybe skip the first couple of paragraphs. 

 

Holden Caulfield is a self-important, spoiled and worthless little shit. At the start of the book, he is cooling his heels at the fourth boarding school he's been expelled from because he just can't be bothered to even try to apply himself (having failed four out of five subjects completely), and generally bitching about how phony his room mate, dorm mates and teachers are. Holden, ever heard of the pot calling the kettle black? You are that pot. Not content to waste his the money his parents spent on tuition, he also manages to lose all the fencing equipment belonging to the school before he's expelled. because apparently reading a subway map and keeping track of bags of equipment at the same time overloads the fragile little mind of special disenfranchised snowflake Holden.

 

Having spent a while internally bitching about some of his school friends and being jealous of their luck with the ladies, he picks a fight with his room mate and decides to leave school early, before his parents are alerted to his most recent failure. His grandmother is apparently overly generous, so he has cash to spare and goes by train to New York, where he books himself into a rather sleazy hotel. Here he proceeds to ruminate about girls he's known but never managed to hook up with (probably because they can tell a mile away that Holden is an emo narcissist with an inflated sense of his own self-worth and no apparent sense of humour) and gets beaten up by a pimp after paying a prostitute NOT to have sex with him. He also goes out drinking and hemorrhaging money all over the place. After a couple of days, when he's nearly broke, he goes home to see his little sister. Then he visits an old teacher who seems to have escaped Holden's go to judgement of being too phony, but said teacher may or may not make a pass at him, so Holden flees into the night. He then has some sort of mental breakdown and ends up in an institution, from whence he tells the entire story of the book.

 

As is hopefully clear from my rating of this book, I absolutely loathed this so-called piece of classic literature. I don't think I've ever seen a better example of the fact that it's not always the worthy texts that survive to become classics. I honestly have no idea how this book is lauded as a great novel or why it speaks to people even today. Holden is absolutely insufferable. He's a whiny, snivelling, spoiled and clueless little brat, who seems to think he is better than everyone around him, adults as well as kids his own age. The only hardship he's ever experienced is the death of his younger brother, apart from that, he's lived a life of ease and privilege and is determined to throw everything he is given away, because growing up is just so, you know, boring.

 

Not only is Holden absolutely insufferable, and very high on my list of fictional characters I want to knee in the groin and punch in the face (Heathcliff from Wuthering Heights is probably still number one, closely followed by Cathy from that same book). He doesn't appear to undergo any sort of significant development over the course of the book. He starts out a horrible waste of oxygen, and ends the book the same way. The only nice thing I can find to say about him is that he loves his little sister Phoebe, who is about as great a character as Holden is awful.

 

I seriously, for real, do not understand what is supposed to be so great about this book. What purpose does it serve? Nothing of consequence happens. Holden is atrocious and likes to ramble on about nothing, thinking back to previous events in his life that are also fairly insignificant and amounted to very little. Like so many other teens, he feels alienated from his surroundings and doesn't fit in. Not that he does a thing to change that or to find some sort of purpose. All he does is complain and sulk, and I wanted to slap him so hard his teeth rattled. My colleagues in the English department have decided that all the higher level kids are to read this book when we're embarking on our current topic of Classics, and I just desperately hope that it reads better to teenagers than it did to me. As several of my colleagues seemed rather appalled at my vehement hate for the book, it can be their job to defend its worthiness on the curriculum. None have so far been able to explain in a satisfying way to me why this book deserves to still be read in schools or by anyone, anywhere. Sorry, Mr Salinger, your book is bad and if you weren't dead, you should feel bad. The only upside for me as a teacher that I can think of is that the kids reading the book won't be able to find a movie adaptation they can watch to cheat and thus escape the reading.

 

I can now tick this book off the list of "books to read before you die". I found it even more pointless and hard going than The Great Gatsby and Anna Karenina (though at least, like Gatsby, it's a blessedly short book, not a massive brick like Anna), but don't loathe it with every fiber of my being like I do Wuthering Heights and Tess of the D'Urbervilles. Although with all those books, I at least see what they bring to literature. This book - nothing. I'm pretty sure it's going to be the lowest rated book I read this year, so at least I got that out of the way early.

Source: kingmagu.blogspot.no/2016/02/cbr8-book-19-catcher-in-rye-by-jd.html
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