“I’ve been going to graduations, and there isn’t much that I find more pretentious or irksome than the sight of ‘faculty’ and graduates in their academic get-ups.”
Author J.D. SALINGER, writing in a letter to E. Michael Mitchell, who illustrated his landmark novel The Catcher In The Rye. The letter, dated June 1982, was one of two found inside a copy of the book which Salinger refused to sign for Mitchell.
(via the New York Times)
His most famous character, Holden Caulfield, said it was impossible to find a place that is “nice and peaceful,” but J. D. Salinger may have found something close for himself in the woods of this tiny town.
Here Mr. Salinger was just Jerry, a quiet man who arrived early to church suppers, nodded hello while buying a newspaper at the general store and wrote a thank-you note to the fire department after it extinguished a blaze and helped save his papers and writings.
Despite his reputation, Mr. Salinger “was not a recluse,” said Nancy Norwalk, a librarian at the Philip Read Memorial Library in Plainfield, which Mr. Salinger would frequent. “He was a towns- person.”
And last week, after his death, his neighbors would not talk about him, reflecting what one called “the code of the hills.”
“Nobody conspired to keep his privacy, but everyone kept his privacy — otherwise he wouldn’t have stayed here all these years,” said Sherry Boudro of nearby Windsor, Vt., who said her father, Paul Sayah, befriended Mr. Salinger in the 1970s. “This community saw him as a person, not just the author of ‘The Catcher in the Rye.’ They respect him. He was an individual who just wanted to live his life.”
LAST EDITIONS Copies of J.D. Salinger’s classic novel “The Catcher in the Rye,” as well as his volume of short stories called “Nine Stories,” at the Orange Public Library in Orange Village, Ohio, on Thursday. The legendary author died Wednesday at the age of 91. At left, a 1951 photo of the author. (Photo: Amy Sancetta / AP via the Wall St. Journal)
“If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you’ll probably want to know is where I was born and what my lousy childhood was like, and how my parents were occupied and all before they had me, and all that David Copperfield kind of crap, but I don’t feel like going into it, if you want to know the truth.”
Opening line from The Catcher In The Rye by J.D. Salinger, who died today at the age of 91.
(via the NY Times)
J.D. Salinger, the elusive and enigmatic author of “The Catcher in the Rye,” has died, The Associated Press reported. He was 91 and lived in Cornish, N.H.
The A.P. cited a statement from Mr. Salinger’s literary representative, saying that he died of natural causes at his home.
Published in 1951, “The Catcher in the Rye” became Mr. Salinger’s most famous work with its distinctive depiction of its angry, iconoclastic teenage protagonist, Holden Caulfield. Mr. Salinger frequently dealt with the subject of precocious youth in his short stories of the Glass family, as well as “Franny and Zooey,” a collection of two long short stories. He had not published a new work since 1965, and lived in near-total isolation, having refused the attention of the literary world and the news media for decades.