Top 10 Books by J. D. Salinger

 

Born in New York, Jerome David Salinger was one of the most influential American writers of the 20th century. Salinger gained fame from his all-time classic and his landmark novel, Catcher in the Rye. His works mostly included compositions based on adolescents as to which his works were more appealing to youngsters. His writing style included a deep involvement with the character because of which he used techniques like interior monologues, letters to display his gift for dialogue.

 

His works included some elements of his personality, making the compositions more interactive. Other than the “Catcher in the Rye”, his famous works consist of “Franny and Zooey” and “Nine Stories”. Besides writing, Salinger also served in the army and participated in World War 2.

 

Catcher in the Rye

This classic by J. D. Salinger exemplifies an adolescent, Holden Caulfield's dramatic conflict against death and growing up. After having a tiff with his roommate, Stradlater, Caulfield leaves school two days beforehand to look at the New York City. On his way, he comes across his teachers, prostitutes, nuns, an old girlfriend and his sister on his way home.

Read it For:
Although the text seems to portray emotions and unamended thoughts of a genuine teen, it is all the way Salinger's mind.
Don't Read it For:
The plot is repetitious and kind of ho-hum. Many people regarded the introduction to be pathetic and unwelcoming. Also, the book was disputed for its profanity.
What makes this book stand out?:
The book has an exorbitant humour and Salinger's appeal of anti-celebrity and anti-consumerist stance.

Franny and Zooey

The writing is composed of two parts. These were published in the New Yorker in the first place as two short stories. The story takes place in college when Franny visits her boyfriend, Lane. Disillusioned with selfishness and unreality felt around her, Franny determines to escape through spiritual means. Zooey's story is set in after Franny had left out.

Read it For:
Salinger has produced one of the few naturalistic family bust-ups in modern. It wouldn't perk you up, but wouldn't leave you cold as well.
Don't Read it For:
The part two, the novella “Zooey”, took too much more time than the first, which makes it tiring.
What makes this book stand out?:
Its wearing and unbending, but not uninteresting. A short book that can be swallowed at whirlwind speeds.

Nine stories

”Nine Stories” is a collection of short tales by Salinger. It consists of Salinger's two most famous works — “A Perfect Day for Bananafish” and “For Esmé– with Love and Squalor”.

Read it For:
The stories are more like unusual nine impressionist sketches. They are laden with sensational and dreamlike imagery, which makes it one of J. D. Salinger's sellers.
Don't Read it For:
The stories seem to have a theme of wide-ranging rich people in solitude in some manner or another, which makes it dull to read.
What makes this book stand out?:
The moods of desperation, frustration, and pell-mell identities. The characters seem to be realistic with some real fuss, spilling into their lives.

Complete Uncollected Short Stories

A contraband book, featuring all the 22 missing stories by Salinger in one perfect bound. It's a collection of 20 short stories and 2 novellas that have never been published outside their magazine appearances.

Read it For:
The stories are some of Salinger's earliest works, which were rejected/ unpublished as well as stories featuring Holden Caulfield, Salinger's most popular character.
Don't Read it For:
The texts are relatively unclear of this collection, thus can a tad bit difficult to be read.
What makes this book stand out?:
Its a collection of Salinger's work that has hardly been discovered. Also, it talks about Salinger's pre and posts war involvement episodes. If you've been obsessed with Caulfield, do give this a shot.
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Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters and Seymour

Like its predecessor, Raise high, and Seymour collects two stories that were also published in the New Yorker. In “Raise High”, the story about a vegetable hawker assigned the work of selecting perfect steed for a Duke. Wherein “Seymour- An Introduction”, the story is a personal account of Buddy Glass attempt to lay again the life of his brother, Seymour.

Read it For:
The first part is light and comfy and keeps swinging between humour and intensity, making the composition as one of the J. D. Salinger's popular novels
Don't Read it For:
Part two is a way bit lengthier and intensified than his companion text, which can be weary to read.
What makes this book stand out?:
The contains some pieces from the J. D. Salinger best book, Franny, and Zooey. Also, its great blend of humour and intense emotions.

Three Early Stories

This is a collection of stories by J. D. Salinger that was published posthumously. It consists of three stories – “The Young Folks”, “Go See Eddie” and “Once a week won't kill you”. These were published in magazines and mark the earlier period of Salinger as a writer.

Read it For:
Salinger gives literary wings to human interaction. Plus, the compositions date back to Salinger's days as a budding writer.
Don't Read it For:
There are hardly any lines to be highlighted as the story tends to stick to descriptions.
What makes this book stand out?:
The stories depict Salinger's sharp observations of manner and speech that feel veritable and provide a lifetime of insight into a character.

J. D. Salinger: The Last Interview and Other Conversations

After “The Catcher in Rye” was published, Salinger was chased by fans and journalists. In this collection, he shares all his encounters with the people and how the attack was like. Including his surprisingly last interview.

Read it For:
The book gives an insight of Salinger himself and how he resisted being in the limelight.
Don't Read it For:
As stated by many, the book was not authorized and that's pretty much like the tone of the book. Reading it would be like invading his privacy. However, if you're an obsessed fan, give it a read.
What makes this book stand out?:
The book is very stimulating. Reading it would blow off all your doubts about a truly misunderstood and isolated author.

This Sandwich has no mayonnaise

A poetic account of a pained Vincent Caulfield, Holden's elder brother, who narrates the story as a sergeant sitting in the back of an army troop truck of men preparing to go on to a dance in the town. The story leaves Vincent in the pangs of despair and an involuntariness to accept.

Read it For:
The story has pieces about Holden, Salinger's most popular character. Plus, the story is told as a stream-of-consciousness.
Don't Read it For:
There are flashbacks and offer nostalgia to the readers who have read the Catcher, this causes a haywire about who is after whom.
What makes this book stand out?:
It's a new narrative and a nostalgic sequel at the same time.

Teddy

Teddy revolves around Mr. and Mrs. McArdle and their 10-year-old son, Teddy, who, it turns out, is a genius. This is a short story by Salinger, which later got added the Nine Stories collection of his.

Read it For:
Story is a beautiful disagreement, holding out the tale of tenuous life in one hand and yet supercilious towards society.
Don't Read it For:
The ending of the story is doubtful and leaves the reader confused and wondering.
What makes this book stand out?:
The ironic and observant words of Teddy share a similarity to those of J. D. Salinger himself. Perhaps, another superficial insight into Salinger's being.

Just before the war with Eskimos

The story has been featured in The New Yorker and also in the Nine Stories by Salinger himself. The story revolves around two young girls, Ginnie and Selena.

Read it For:
The story possesses a strong character development and interrelationship of the characters.
Don't Read it For:
The plot promises to be engaging until the end but doesn't seem to fulfill it.
What makes this book stand out?:
The story has been stated as a tale of adolescent alienation. Besides, one can it read this when not in a mood something lengthy and intense.

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