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"The Catcher in the Rye" by J. D. Salinger - summary, download

book cover The Catcher in the Rye  Salinger

 

Summary of the novel

USA 1949. The young man Holden Caulfield, while in the hospital, talks about himself.
He failed his final exams at boarding school and was expelled. Holden is forced to leave school earlier than he intended due to a fight with a classmate, but plans to come home a few days after receiving news of his parents' expulsion.
At the hotel, Holden refuses a prostitute who has come, but gives her the money. She brings a pimp, who beats Holden and takes the additional amount, as the prostitute felt offended. He spends the day on a date with a friend, whom he eventually insults, then meets with an acquaintance and still decides to go home.
There is no one there, except for his younger sister, with whom he shares his problems. Holden tells her about a song he accidentally heard on the street from a small child ("If you caught someone in the rye in the evening ...") and says that he would like to devote his life to saving children who play in the thick rye without noticing the abyss. "I know this is nonsense, but this is the only thing I really want. I guess I'm a fool." Holden disappears from home to avoid meeting with his returning parents.
The next day, he meets with his sister to repay her debt, they go for a ride on the merry-go-round and, spinning in the rain, Holden realizes that he is happy that his little sister is happy.

 

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