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Catch 22

by Joseph Heller

Many people give up on this book, largely due to the fact that it is very stylised, with the narrative jumping backwards and forwards in time and the world being very much one of heightened reality. However, if you relax and don't worry about exactly what is happening when, then you'll marvel at the absurdity of Heller's characters and the devilshly simple, totally non-sensical, but cast-iron logic of Catch 22!

A comment on the madness of war, the corruption of governments and officials and the helplessness of civilians and army personnel alike, it is one of the major literary achievements of the late 20th Century.

I cried with laughter when reading this and more-or-less cancelled life so I could finish it. Its in my top ten books of all time and I have read it 4 or 5 times more since I first read it at 21. It really is one of the books you definitely should read before you die!

If this doesn't persuade you to give it a go, then at least watch the film directed by Mike Nichols and starring Alan Arkin, Anthony Perkins and Orson Wells. It is very close to the book, just as funny, but much easier to follow and without some of the boring bits.

Suggested by Saffron, London

Tagged with: challenging hilarious,



I'm an avid reader, but I gave up on this one! Will have to try it again sometime.
Susanne Newton

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