Honesty always sets me free. On what makes me shifting opinions on ‘The Catcher in the Rye’


My opinions on certain titles change as I read more books though I am not really sure it contributes much to the shifted point of view.

I’d like to take ‘The Catcher in the Rye’ as a good example for this post. What I used to think as a very good book, revolutionary one is now a mere ordinary piece of writing. It highlights the struggle of a teenager, witty, honest, satirical and powerful but is limited to youth level.

I read the novel a few years ago when I hadn’t read many titles by Victorian writers. I was excited reading it. It was a very quick reading. The language is very straight-forwarded, all is linear. The first person type of narration made me easier to complete reading it. I loved it so much. The mixed feelings after I put it down was still lingering.

I actually wrote a post about this novel but I retouch this issue because I want to admit the truth: the opinions about what was once a great book is very much influenced by someone’s comments on it and somehow I find it true.

This person said the novel was no more than just a boy complaining about his life. I was slapped by his comment because I found his harsh words were true. I edited my opinions then. I admit I was too much in glorifying the novel.

Whether or not this was also caused by the number of many classic novels I had read along the way I do think it was, though not entirely. What is the surest thing in my head is that the more I am comfortable with one type of reading materials the more I get to know what kind of books suit me best and matches up my identity. As this happens, I realize what kind of books which are not as good as my standard and what titles that are marvelous.

This is a sort of vague. This brings me a kind of click-it-or-not emotion. Or may be the novel just seems silly for me now. All in all, opinions upon certain books are highly changeable with various factors prompt us to behave like that. May be you have had it all inside your head for a long time then there are moments that awakes you for this shifted opinion. Or you are just awaken by someone’s comments then analyzing that his or her opinions are in line with yours now.

It takes courage to remedy our falsehoods. It requires honesty to admit my mistakes. It forces me to annul previous thoughts but once I do that, I am free.

Thank you for providing this picture.


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