Thursday, January 28, 2010

Fat Ladies and Bananafish. by violet

In the interest of full disclosure, I’m a lover of literature. I think it’s pretty easy to trace back to the beginning of my life when my parents would read to me. Then it was an addiction to The Baby-Sitters Club, and then it was the wonderful and amazing world of advanced placement English – where other people cared about books too. And we got to talk about them for an hour every day.

One of my favorite authors, J.D. Salinger died today. Much like everyone who went through high school, I was introduced to Salinger through Catcher in the Rye during sophomore year English - Miss Keenan one of my favorite teachers. While I liked the book, there was something I didn’t quite get.

While talking about the book with my dad as we often do, and how I didn’t really get Catcher. He recommended that I give some of Salinger’s other work a try particularly, Franny and Zooey. It quickly became one of my favorite books of all time. The character of Franny really spoke to me. In the book Franny is trying to find her way in the world. She is looking at all the different paths that life is presenting her I wondering which one she can authentically take. She’s a young girl on the brink of becoming who she is. Probably spoke to me at the time I read it. I had dreams of staging the book as a play – somewhere off Broadway; clearly not happening since apparently he’s turned down everyone who has asked included the likes of Spielberg for the right.

I came to respect a man who had published so little. Whose books were simple white covers with black type (at least my versions. There’s a new fangled Catcher cover out there now). Whose characters may wonder off into the depths of Eastern philosophy but who cut through it all in the end.

So if you haven’t already, pick up a book written by J.D. Salinger and give it a try. I know I will be rereading Franny and Zooey this weekend. Or maybe Nine Stories. Maybe both.

There isn’t anyone out there who isn’t Seymour’s Fat Lady.


  1. You were the first person I thought of when JD Salinger passed away. I think I'm going to put my other books on hold and pick up "Catcher in the Rye" this weekend.

  2. I never had to read "Catcher in the Rye" in high school and I'm kind of sad I didn't. I will have to pick up a few of his books next time I go to Borders.