The Catcher in the Rye

The Catcher in the Rye - This is going to be a short review because, frankly, I don't quite know what to say. Someone may call me out for saying this, but I can't help but wonder why this book is so touted. I admit that Holden Caulfield is a unique and entertaining character. I couldn't help but smile and chuckle every time he said "crumby" or "phoney" or "goddam" for the hundredth time. But as I read, I started to notice that Holden seems very dissatisfied with everything and everyone around him. Like his sister says, "You don't like anything that happens." I started to form an impression that Holden is bipolar. He certainly has some kind of mental disturbance going on with himself which I think stems from the loss of his younger brother to cancer. Back then, there really wasn't so much openness toward mental illness. And people didn't yet understand the effects of a death in the family on a young child and that said child might need counseling to help him/her deal with the loss. Holden needed that kind of help and when he didn't get it, he blasted the world, so to speak. But I think his 'dislike' of everything is really him reflecting his despair on the world. There is also a part toward the end where sexual abuse is alluded to and that could also be at play in Holden's character and his behavior.In all, I would have to say that the book is a great character study, but I was expecting it to be much better.