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Thursday, June 23, 2011

The Catcher

It is of what I bring to attention here, to be something so influential to me as a person it washes my mind out and replaces it constantly whenever it appears. I read with difficulty. I have to admit, I do love books and the knowledge and emotion they burst out with from within but I sometimes struggle as a person to understand concepts and ideas being explored by the authors. It can be a confusing process to me, a process that requires a lot of research and one that is undeniably very long indeed. However, there is one text that I once read and re-read again so recently that caught my attention. A novel so refreshing to me, and so powerful to my soul, mind and even my heart…it piercing me inside at times. Knives thundering into my body, making me believe and understand, making me feel comforted and not alone. Allowed me to think in a new way, to see ones perspective directly from their eyes and truly learn about someone else. The Catcher In The Rye. The brilliance of the Holden Caulfield, a character I will never forget.

I grew a lot stronger when reading the novel. Holden Caulfield's direct thoughts are written word for word down on each page. You truly understand what goes through his mind. It's the amazing feature of Salinger's writing in the text, that he can pinpoint so many areas and emotions and expel them onto a page. It takes real skill and time to do so, a real skill I wish to one day master for my own. Holden is quite the teenage character, as I first read the book I was similar age to Holden himself and I could not help but notice similarities going through his mind and my own. The array of emotions that seem never-ending of anger, fear, greed and even displacement. The confusion of who he was as a person on the planet, where he was to go, the adventure he voluntarily undertook to find meaning in his life. What he did physically through his own thoughts, is a teenage dream overall a passage that we see in our minds of us doing. An adventure we find ourselves in where we wonder who we are, and how we are unique. What is different about us individually, what is our purpose here? Salinger outlines an adventure that we usually take in our minds and even down to our very soul or heart, we don't notice it often only when the hard parts hit – which can be more often than not. To read a novel that puts that into a physical masterpiece, of a character running out on his own finding his place in the world hits a real soft spot. I'm suddenly not alone, and I understand that many other people must also undergo similar feelings and curiosities. Questions that lack sufficient answers, or answers lacking detail or care. Our demands are so high, with Holden he wasn't ready for anything – he just saw a path and took it wondering where it would go. With teenagers today, I think that similar choice of a path is taken.

Do we follow the queue, or find our own way around?

It can be a rather strange thing to ask. But also a question that can be incredibly rewarding as a result if an answer resists. I believe it's something we ask ourselves someday in our lives, something we will eventually want to know the answer to. What are we as people? Are we really individuals? Or do we follow in Holden's footsteps to lead a new path with no ending or even a beginning…it's more a trap we collapse into where the story continues until the end…then more questions appear: what is the end?

I cannot recommend more than my life to anyone who has not read The Catcher In The Rye. It's a novel that must be read, and I implore anyone who is able to get a copy to go and read it. It is an adventure that connects your mind to reality, a physical and mentally strong reality. You will see what you think come to life right in front of you. Salinger's haunting and addictive writing style collects yourself to read the thoughts of Holden Caulfield. A protagonist? To me he is one of the best.

(c) Lerock0 2011

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