The Catcher in the Rye Part II
May 19, 2009
Posted by Nick Sarno
From The Bookseller.com:
A former gravedigger and debut novelist has penned a sequel to J D Salinger’s seminal work The Catcher in the Rye which is due to be released next month.
Swedish/American travel writer, John David California, wrote 60 Years Later Coming Through the Rye after a becoming “captivated” by the story of Holden Caulfield. California said he first became acquainted with The Catcher in the Rye after finding a well-thumbed copy in an abandoned cabin in rural Cambodia.
Published by Windupbird Publishing, the book is billed as ‘freestanding’ and so can be read without first reading the novel that inspired it. As the title suggests, the book tells the story of Caulfield 60 years later when he is 76-year-old resident of a nursing home.
Windupbird describes him as a “bewildered old man who is suddenly and maliciously yanked back onto the page by his creator”. Caulfield comes to his senses and has an overwhelming compulsion to flee. He boards a bus and embarks on a curious journey through the streets of New York and “many poignant memories of his adulthood”.
Here are the things that sound a little fishy:
1. “A former gravedigger”. This isn’t to say that gravediggers, both ex- and current, can’t write novels. It’s just a little too sweet (see: JT Leroy).
2. He first became acquainted with the original after finding “a well-thumbed copy in an abandoned cabin in rural Cambodia”. The phrase well-thumbed sounds like a tip off to an urban legend. Also, if you’re able to make it to an abandoned cabin in Cambodia, you’ve also probably heard of The Catcher in the Rye. It’s kind of like not hearing about baseball until your eye-opening trip to Japan.
3. A search for “Windupbird Publishing” pulls up only information on this book. Much of it in Russian.
4. No copyright problems? With Salinger?
5. On the Amazon page, the publisher is listed as “Nicotext”. From Nicotext’s mission: “We make books whose sole purpose it is to make you giggle. While thumbing our collective nose at the literati, we have found our niche amongst the useless, the trivial and the potentially offensive. The books in our catalogue may not reflect our capacity for intellectual athleticism, but they will put a smile on your face, which is our main objective.” They put out books like “The Macho Man’s (Bad) Joke Book” and “Extreme Sports”.
6. John Davis California? Like JD California? Seriously.
All I’m saying is, if you are going to come up with a hoax make it either A) believable or B) funny.