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Letter of the Day: Overwrought review

Overwrought review

EDITOR: Teresa Mariani's Close to Home column on the seminal American novel "Catcher in the Rye" was overwrought ("Give teens better books than &‘Catcher in the Rye,' " Sunday). Sixty-five million copies of this book have been sold worldwide, and it has never been out of print. It has been taught in high schools nationwide for decades and is one of the works that guided me from juvenile genre fiction to mainstream literature in my teens.

I was amused by her descriptions of the book as "crap" and "rhymes with bucks." Then she had the temerity to say that J.D. Salinger "can't write."

To dislike a book is everyone's privilege, but that doesn't make it a bad book.

I, too, prefer the printed page to the pixelated monitor and found her alternate choices mostly sound (I tried "Like Water For Chocolate" and found it like boring for hours, but I would never call it crap), and I agree that kids need to get off Facebook and put their face in a book, but denigrating Salinger's magnum opus will not accomplish this.

She asks, "Why don't Americans read books anymore?" For my generation the culprit was television. Today's young people have television and the wild and woolly distractions of the Internet; ironic considering Mariani's occupation (freelance web content creator).

STEVE TORNQUIST

Santa Rosa


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