Reading Group #1: The Catcher in the Rye

Discussion in 'The Living Room' started by Omar, Jan 29, 2009.

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  1. #1
    Omar

    Omar Administrator LPA Super Member

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    Ok folks, I'll make this short and sweet. February 1st we officially start our first reading group!

    The Catcher in the Rye is divided into 26 chapters, so here's how we'll break things down:

    Feb. 1 - Feb. 6: Chapters 1- 5
    Feb. 7 - Feb. 13: Chapters 6 - 12
    Feb. 14 - Feb. 20 - Chapters 13 - 18
    Feb. 21 - Feb. 27 - Chapters 19 - 26

    As you'll notice, we'll be reading about 6 chapters a week, which isn't all that much, but I'm willing to speed things up if need be. Each of these four sections ends on a Friday, so whatever you do, don't divulge any spoilers about the previous chapters until then. This means, for instance, that you shouldn't discuss anything that happens in chapters 13-18 until Feb. 20.

    Now since we all have different schedules, a live chat is probably impossible. So instead, we can just post in here, which I think will work fine. You can post questions, comments, thoughts, anything you want related to the book (except spoilers, of course). Let's just make this fun!

    I look forward to reading and sharing thoughts with you guys! ^_^
     
  2. #2
    Omar

    Omar Administrator LPA Super Member

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    Today is our first official day! Make sure you start reading soon, although it shouldn't take too long. :)
     
  3. #3
    Will

    Will bread crumbs & white stones LPA Addicted VIP

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    I meant to go out and get a copy of the book, but I completely forgot. I'll see if I can't pick one up before the deadline for the first discussion.
     
  4. #4
    Omar

    Omar Administrator LPA Super Member

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    I'll bet it's even on-line somewhere too. I tried a quick search, but I couldn't find it. You may have better luck.

    Slightly off topic, though, this is fast becoming one of my favorites, if not my favorite. Thanks a bunch to whoever recommended it! :D
     
  5. #5
    Jesse

    Jesse Out of the abyss. LPA Über VIP

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    I did. And I know where to get it online.. :lol:
     
  6. #6
    Omar

    Omar Administrator LPA Super Member

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    Yes, PM either of us and we'll help you out. ;)
     
  7. #7
    TheRockChick

    TheRockChick Pffft... LPA Super Member

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    I have a couple of good links, too, if anyone is interested.

    Anyhow, I finished reading the first part. I quite like the book so far, it's rather fun to read. Nothing that special about it, if you ask me. And I don't love it, but I do like it.
     
  8. #8
    Dean

    Dean LPA Addict LPA Addict

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    I'll start it again tonight. I'll be okay with the time I have left for the first part.
     
  9. #9
    El Muerto

    El Muerto LPA Super Member LPA Super Member

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    I started today. I hope I'll catch up with you guys by the end of the next week.
     
  10. #10
    Omar

    Omar Administrator LPA Super Member

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    Okay, so did anybody read? What did you think?

    Two things stuck out to me:

    (1) He says early on he's "the most terrific liar you ever saw," which makes me question just about everything that he says therafter. You'll notice in the coming chapters that this guy has had a few too many roommates for them to all be real people.

    (2) He's completely inconsistent. For instance, he says he hates when people talk too much, but that's exactly what he's doing with us. Also, he seems to find something about almost everybody that he doesn't like, but then he still chooses to hang out with them (ie: Ackley and Stradlater).

    What about you guys?
     
  11. #11
    El Muerto

    El Muerto LPA Super Member LPA Super Member

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    I actually found time to read the first 5 chapters last night.. I don't know why, but I thought this book was about some crazy murderer or something, I really didn't expect a sixteen-year-old telling me his story haha :)

    I'm not really thrilled so far, too much talking and no real action. But I guess it's too early in the book for me to pass the judgment.

    I like your point, Omar, about him lying to us about the things that happened.
    Yeah, I don't know what else to say, I've gotta read some more to get the general impression of where the story's going.

    P.S.
    And I finally know who Holden Caulfield from The Offspring's song "Get It Right" is. Boy, this goddamn book really opened my eyes.
     
  12. #12
    Jesse

    Jesse Out of the abyss. LPA Über VIP

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    Omar you do make good very good points and where they are is why I like the book so much. It's like he's a guy that doesn't know what he likes but knows exactly. Someone who hates and likes the same things and keeps distorting and changing his mind. It's interesting. I would say more but it would give some details away so I'll keep quiet for now
     
  13. #13
    TheRockChick

    TheRockChick Pffft... LPA Super Member

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    I did notice that, yeah. And I now realize the other two things you mentioned. You sure make good points. I don't usually analyze books the way you did.

    And about the lying part, do you really think that he's not telling the truth? That might actually be pretty interesting.

    Anyways, there isn't much left to say. I'll just keep reading.
     
  14. #14
    El Muerto

    El Muerto LPA Super Member LPA Super Member

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    After I re-read this post of mine in the Blink 182 thread I realized I'm starting to talk slightly like Holden haha. Too much reading for me.

    Anyway, I finished the book, and I'm a little disappointed, I guess I had set my expectations too high. But I'm looking forward to hearing what you guys have to say about the book.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2009
  15. #15
    Dean

    Dean LPA Addict LPA Addict

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    It's a very relatable and empathetic book, I think, which is something at least one or two of those who haven't read it before will probably come to find and moreover I think that's why it's held in the esteem that it is, because obviously it's not incredibly action-packed and it's not really poetically written in a traditional sense. I remember back when I first read it, I was going through a rough patch in my mid-teens and I was always thinking "Christ, this is exactly how I feel right now, right down to the finest detail".
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2009
  16. #16
    Omar

    Omar Administrator LPA Super Member

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    Why do you guys think Holden hates "phonies" so much? I mean, he practically labels everyone as a phony. What makes me different?

    I know the reason he dislikes movies (in part) is because one of Salinger's previous stories was made/supposed to adapted, and didn't work out like he suspected.
     
  17. #17
    Dean

    Dean LPA Addict LPA Addict

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    Well, it's pretty evident to me, with the way that he reacts to Mr Spencer pointing out his academic failings, that he is a rather insecure person, and as such it would seem that he has delusional tendencies which lead to him desperately trying to hold practically everyone else in a lower regard than himself.
     
  18. #18
    Neotriple

    Neotriple LPA VIP LPA VIP

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    Hey guys, mind if I get in on this? I read it a while ago, just wanted to share my opinions on the book?
     
  19. #19
    TheRockChick

    TheRockChick Pffft... LPA Super Member

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    Yeah, what Dean said. Well, that or he's just over confident and thinks he's better than everyone else...

    One thing I liked about Holden is how much his little sister means to him. The way he talks about her, it's like she's his best friend or something. You almost wouldn't expect something this nice of him.

    Not at all. :) I don't know about the guys, though, but I don't suppose the'd mind it.
     
  20. #20
    Omar

    Omar Administrator LPA Super Member

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    Neotriple: not all at. :)

    RockChick: Yes, I noticed that too. His sister and Jane seem to be the only two people he really cares about.

    I guess since things are kinda slow, feel free to discuss points beyond the scheduled chapters. Just make sure to highlight any spoilers.
     
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