I loved the story as well, especially the conversation at the end between Franny and Zooey on the phone – it was beautiful. But the writing was outstanding, and what ultimately gave it a place on my long list of Favorite Books Of All Time. There are countless examples of Salinger’s mastery of Dialog, Detail, Gesture, Sentences, and Character.
Here are some of my favorite examples:
“Lane spotted her immediately, and despite whatever it was he was trying to do with his face, his arm that shot up into the air was the whole truth.” (p. 7)
“But he got up from the piano bench too restively for it to have been a real gesture of dismissal.” (p. 133)
“At one of the bookcases, he gave a misaligned book an orderly little push with his thumb, then passed on.” (p. 136)
“At first piecemeal, then point-blank, he let his attention be drawn to a little scene that was being acted out sublimely, unhampered by writers and directors and producers, five stories below the window and across the street.” (p. 151)
“Tears, presumably, were imminent, if not already on the way.” (p. 150)
“When he moved again, it was as though marionette strings had been attached to him and given an overzealous yank.” (p. 182)
Salinger’s Nine Stories now holds a place high up on my To Be Read List. I’m also going to give Catcher In the Rye another chance – reading more for the writing rather than the plot, which last time (and only time) I found it hard to relate.
But first – Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire awaits my attention, waiving at me from my bookcase reminding me of my quest to re-read all of Harry Potter’s adventures before his final one this July.
(This post was brought over from emilyw.vox.com.)