Legendary Author J.D. Salinger Dead At Age 91
Iconic author J.D. (Jerome David) Salinger has passed away at the age of 91 at his home in Cornish, NH.
Salinger, best known for his coming-of-age classic, Catcher In The Rye, has been on high school English teacher's "required reading" lists for years and the novel is considered a modern classic by most literary critics. The book, Salinger's most popular by far, has sold over 60 million copies since its release in 1951.
Catcher In The Rye has influenced several generations in the last 60 years, and its reach can be felt in popular culture through film, TV and music. Salinger penned the novel in the post-War era of the early 50's and latched onto the growing divide between the new-generation of independent minded teens and their distrust of established norms and oppressive authority.
Salinger, a bit peculiar, shunned his celebrity-status to the point of extreme reclusiveness. Though he continued to write throughout the rest of his life, his last published work was a novella, which appeared in the June 19, 1965 edition of The New Yorker, titled Hapworth 16, 1924.
Apart from Catcher in the Rye, many Salinger fans count the novellas centered around the exceptional Glass family, as fictionalized in Raise High The Roof Beams, Carpenters, and Seymour: An Introduction, as their favorites of his short, but brilliant work.
As a budding writer in my youthful days, I recall reading Salinger's short story, For Esmé - with Love & Squalor, and feeling particularly touched by the story's emphasis on love, loss and the soul-defining significance writing and words can have. Like most of Salinger's work, it too dealt with war and the horrors associated with it.
R.I.P. Mr. Salinger, we've lost a modern legend.