Cover image for Critical companion to J.D. Salinger : a literary reference to his life and work
Title:
Critical companion to J.D. Salinger : a literary reference to his life and work
Author:
Mueller, Bruce F. (Bruce Frederick), 1950-
Publication Information:
New York : Facts On File, [2011]

©2011
Physical Description:
xii, 495 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm.
Summary:
Presents a guide to the American novelist, including a chronology of his life, descriptions of the important personalities and issues of his day, and entries on his works with discussions on plots, characters, language, and major themes.
Language:
English
Contents:
Biography -- Works A-Z -- Related people, places, and topics -- Appendices -- A Salinger chronology -- Bibliography of Salinger's published works -- Bibliography of secondary sources -- Index.
Added Author:
ISBN:
9780816065974
Format :
Book

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Library
Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Status
Central Library PS3537.A426 Z76 2011 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area
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Summary

Summary

J.D. Salinger, who died in January 2010, was not only one of the greatest American writers of the 20th century, he was also one of the most mysterious. His novel The Catcher in the Rye has influenced generations of Americans, and his stories and novellas are widely read and taught in schools.

Critical Companion to J.D. Salinger is a comprehensive new book that examines the life and work of this prolific author as well as some of the themes that can be found in his writing.

Coverage includes:

A concise but thorough biography of Salinger Entries on all of Salinger's works, including The Catcher in the Rye , the classic stories in the collection Nine Stories (including "A Perfect Day for Bananafish"), Franny and Zooey, "Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters," and more. Each entry contains subentries on the work's main characters (including Holden Caulfield, Seymour Glass, and more) Entries on related people, places, and topics, such as Franz Kafka, Central Park, The New Yorker , and Zen Buddhism Appendixes, including a chronology, a bibliography of Salinger's works, and a secondary source bibliography.


Reviews 2

Booklist Review

This entry in the publisher's Critical Companion series focuses on the late, elusive J. D. Salinger. Like other titles in the series, it is divided into three main parts: Biography; Works A-Z ; and Related People, Places, and Topics. A fourth section contains the appendixes. Since Salinger essentially disappeared from public view in 1965 and zealously guarded his privacy, much of the biography deals with legal battles and rumors, including speculation about the existence of unpublished manuscripts. Works A-Z has entries for all his published fiction along with many nonfiction pieces and unpublished stories. Not surprisingly, the longest entry nearly 50 pages is for The Catcher in the Rye. The entry has an introduction, an overview, a chapter-by-chapter synopsis, a long critical analysis, and a publication history. Following this are entries for each character, from Holden Caulfield himself to Harvard guy and Waiter, cheap restaurant. There is also an extensive bibliography. Part 3, Related People, Places, and Topics, has entries for topics such as Central Park, the New Yorker, and Zen. Among the appendixes are a chronology, a bibliography of Salinger's published works, and a bibliography of secondary sources. Because of the enduring interest in Salinger's work, both in and outside the classroom, this title would be a good addition to academic and large public libraries. Also available as an e-book.--Quinn, Mary Ellen Copyright 2010 Booklist


Choice Review

This is the first reference work on J. D. Salinger since the author's death in January 2010. That alone makes it noteworthy. The bulk of this volume by Mueller (independent scholar) and Hochman (Southern Connecticut State Univ.) is given over to description and analysis of all of Salinger's work: four books and some three dozen uncollected stories. This is preceded by a short, readable biography, and followed by a short chapter titled "Related People, Places, and Topics.. The four appendixes are "A Salinger Chronology," "Bibliography of Salinger's Published Works," "Year-by-Year Time Line ...," and "Bibliography of Secondary Sources.. The entries in the main section, "Works A-Z," range from a short paragraph on "lost" works to 58 pages on The Catcher in the Rye. Each of the published works is treated with a synopsis, critical analysis, publication history, descriptions of characters, and further reading suggestions. The section on related people includes persons in Salinger's personal and professional life, as well as writers he admired. While this work can be recommended as a useful resource on Salinger's life and work, it is not without faults. Chief among these is an inordinate amount of repetition and redundancy. Readers are given the publication date of one story no fewer than six times, and whole paragraphs are repeated almost verbatim in the biography and chronology sections. Some synopses actually are longer than the texts they summarize. Finally, the descriptions of characters that appear in more than one story are also redundant. Summing Up: Recommended. Lower- and upper-level undergraduates; general readers. M. M. Bohn formerly, University of Nebraska at Omaha


Excerpts

Excerpts

J.D. Salinger, who died in January 2010, was not only one of the greatest American writers of the 20th century, he was also one of the most mysterious. His novel The Catcher in the Rye has influenced generations of Americans, and his stories and novellas are widely read and taught in schools. Critical Companion to J.D. Salinger is a comprehensive new book that examines the life and work of this prolific author as well as some of the themes that can be found in his writing. Coverage includes: A concise but thorough biography of Salinger Entries on all of Salinger's works, including The Catcher in the Rye, the classic stories in the collection Nine Stories (including A Perfect Day for Bananafish), Franny and Zooey, Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters, and more. Each entry contains subentries on the work's main characters (including Holden Caulfield, Seymour Glass, and more) Entries on related people, places, and topics, such as Franz Kafka, Central Park, The New Yorker, and Zen Buddhism Appendixes, including a chronology, a bibliography of Salinger's works, and a secondary source bibliography. Excerpted from Critical Companion to J. D. Salinger by Bruce F. Mueller, Will Hochman All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

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