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Nine Stories by J.D. Salinger
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Nine Stories (edition 2001)

by J.D. Salinger

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8,90377338 (4.17)2 / 88
Member:facucas1
Title:Nine Stories
Authors:J.D. Salinger
Info:Back Bay Books (2001), Paperback, 320 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****1/2
Tags:None

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Nine Stories by J. D. Salinger

  1. 10
    Zen Poems (Everyman's Library Pocket Poets) by Peter Harris (hayfa)
    hayfa: If you liked "Teddy" I think you'll like this book. It's poetry by monks and it has all that sort of things that Teddy was talking about.
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English (69)  Dutch (4)  Spanish (2)  German (1)  Portuguese (Brazil) (1)  All languages (77)
Showing 1-5 of 69 (next | show all)
I read this slowly, savoring and reflecting upon each story as I went along. A few of the stories touched me deeply: For Esme, With Love and Squalor, Teddy and A Perfect Day for Bananafish, which is 16 pages of literary perfection. Each detail, each line of dialogue rings out with church-bell clarity. The encounter between Seymour and Sybil is one of the most tender and heartbreaking conversations between adult and child I've read.

Likely, these preferences say more about me as the reader than Salinger as a writer: each story above features a child and is written with tenderness and a mixture of whimsy and wistfulness, which I much prefer to sardonic and profane. The one exception to this is Uncle Wiggly in Connecticut, which I soaked up in greedy delight. The story is a conversation between to two college (drop-out) friends, Mary Jane and Eloise. The brilliance is in the snap-sharp dialogue and Salinger's brief expository details. The conversation begins on a gossipy note but drills down, as a whisky bottle empties, to reveal Eloise's bitterness over her spent, superficial life. My heart broke for Ramona, Eloise's daughter, who is treated by the adults with as much regard as a pet goldfish. Of course, I come full circle- touched by the a sentimental bit about a vulnerable kid.

Others stories were less moving in their narrative, but contained details that made the mundane fresh and astonishing: the gestures between the couple, he on the phone, she listening next to him in bed, and their shared ritual of smoking in Pretty Mouth and Green My Eyes; the fumbling and irresistible fabrications of a young man, and his surreal week as an art-by-correspondence teacher in the service of an inscrutable Japanese artist and his wife (Presbyterians, natch) in Toronto (De Daumier-Smith's Blue Period).

Salinger's voice echoed long after I finished each story and its volume increased as I started another. Each character, each voice, observation, conversation, very closely echoed another within and between these works; in turn, these are all echoed in Salinger's novels. Of course, many of the characters in Franny and Zooey make appearances here, but the point is that Salinger's style never wavers.

This was such a perfect book of stories to wake up to, with a broad vocabulary and a strong sense of reassurance in the world. I would recommend this to anyone, such a joy to read! ( )
  AlexisLovesBooks | Feb 9, 2016 |
Little jewels of wonder found on the beach of Salinger's mind. He writes of the blend of fantasy and reality in all our lives. ( )
  dbsovereign | Jan 26, 2016 |
Nine really good short stories in this collection! Two of the stories, "A Perfect Day for Bananafish" and "Pretty Mouth and Green My Eyes" ended in ways which I found to be a twist from the way I thought they were going to end! And "De Daumier-Smith's Blue Period" was hillarious! Still, I thought the last story, "Teddy" was the best! What a great ending! I'm glad I finally read this book! ( )
  Stahl-Ricco | Jan 23, 2016 |
Not having read any Salinger (no, not even Catcher) has been at the top of the holes-in-my-life-of-reading list. Now I know that to have been an even bigger hole. ( )
  BooksForDinner | Nov 10, 2015 |
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To Dorothy Olding and Gus Lobrano
First words
There were ninety-seven New York advertising men in the hotel, and, the way they were monopolizing the long-distance lines, the girl in 507 had to wait from noon till almost two-thirty to get her call through.
Quotations
Life is a gift horse in my opinion.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Non-U.S. editions of J.D. Salinger's short story collection Nine Stories are titled For Esmé - with Love and Squalor, and Other Stories. "For Esmé – with Love and Squalor" is also the title of a single Salinger short story from Nine Stories. Please distinguish between the collection of stories (this LT work) and the separate short story having the same title. Thank you.
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Published as Nine Stories in the U.S., and as For Esmé - with Love and Squalor, and Other Stories in the U.K. and other countries.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0316767727, Paperback)

In the J.D. Salinger benchmark "A Perfect Day for Bananafish," Seymour Glass floats his beach mate Sybil on a raft and tells her about these creatures' tragic flaw. Though they seem normal, if one swims into a hole filled with bananas, it will overeat until it's too fat to escape. Meanwhile, Seymour's wife, Muriel, is back at their Florida hotel, assuring her mother not to worry--Seymour hasn't lost control. Mention of a book he sent her from Germany and several references to his psychiatrist lead the reader to believe that World War II has undone him.

The war hangs over these wry stories of loss and occasionally unsuppressed rage. Salinger's children are fragile, odd, hypersmart, whereas his grownups (even the materially content) seem beaten down by circumstances--some neurasthenic, others (often female) deeply unsympathetic. The greatest piece in this disturbing book may be "The Laughing Man," which starts out as a man's recollection of the pleasures of storytelling and ends with the intersection between adult need and childish innocence. The narrator remembers how, at nine, he and his fellow Comanches would be picked up each afternoon by the Chief--a Staten Island law student paid to keep them busy. At the end of each day, the Chief winds them down with the saga of a hideously deformed, gentle, world-class criminal. With his stalwart companions, which include "a glib timber wolf" and "a lovable dwarf," the Laughing Man regularly crosses the Paris-China border in order to avoid capture by "the internationally famous detective" Marcel Dufarge and his daughter, "an exquisite girl, though something of a transvestite." The masked hero's luck comes to an end on the same day that things go awry between the Chief and his girlfriend, hardly a coincidence. "A few minutes later, when I stepped out of the Chief's bus, the first thing I chanced to see was a piece of red tissue paper flapping in the wind against the base of a lamppost. It looked like someone's poppy-petal mask. I arrived home with my teeth chattering uncontrollably and was told to go straight to bed."

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:08 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Salinger's classic collection of short stories is now available in trade paperback.

(summary from another edition)

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Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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