Catch-22: 50th Anniversary Edition by Joseph Heller

Catch-22: 50th Anniversary Edition

byJoseph Heller, Christopher Buckley

Kobo ebook | October 26, 2010

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This fiftieth-anniversary edition commemorates Joseph Heller’s masterpiece with a new introduction; critical essays and reviews by Norman Mailer, Alfred Kazin, Anthony Burgess, and others; rare papers and photos; and much more.

Nominated as one of America’s best-loved novels by PBS’s The Great American Read.

Soon to be a Hulu limited series starring Christopher Abbott, George Clooney, Kyle Chandler, and Hugh Laurie.

Fifty years after its original publication, Catch-22 remains a cornerstone of American literature and one of the funniest—and most celebrated—books of all time. In recent years it has been named to “best novels” lists by Time, Newsweek, the Modern Library, and the London Observer.

Set in Italy during World War II, this is the story of the incomparable, malingering bombardier, Yossarian, a hero who is furious because thousands of people he has never met are trying to kill him. But his real problem is not the enemy—it is his own army, which keeps increasing the number of missions the men must fly to complete their service. Yet if Yossarian makes any attempt to excuse himself from the perilous missions he’s assigned, he’ll be in violation of Catch-22, a hilariously sinister bureaucratic rule: a man is considered insane if he willingly continues to fly dangerous combat missions, but if he makes a formal request to be removed from duty, he is proven sane and therefore ineligible to be relieved.

This fiftieth-anniversary edition commemorates Joseph Heller’s masterpiece with a new introduction by Christopher Buckley; a wealth of critical essays and reviews by Norman Mailer, Alfred Kazin, Anthony Burgess, and others; rare papers and photos from Joseph Heller’s personal archive; and much more. Here, at last, is the definitive edition of a classic of world literature.

Title:Catch-22: 50th Anniversary EditionFormat:Kobo ebookPublished:October 26, 2010Publisher:Simon & SchusterLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1451632967

ISBN - 13:9781451632965

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Reviews

Rated 2 out of 5 by from Not my kind of book A little confusing, too much character development and I felt like nothing happened
Date published: 2018-07-31
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Weird One of the weirdest books I ever read but one of the most hilarious at times.
Date published: 2018-07-03
Rated 4 out of 5 by from tricky but interesting I had a hard time following the story throughout because the timeline doesn't run smoothly and there are so many characters. However, if you just enjoy the anecdotes as you go along the book is interesting and enjoyable.
Date published: 2018-06-12
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Satire 101 You really have to read intently to "catch" all the one-liner satirical statements which saturate this story. It was pretty hard to keep up with all the different characters, but really rewarding read.
Date published: 2018-06-06
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Very difficult read, but it is pretty brilliant The whole story is almost nonsensical which is kinda the point, it is very very difficult to read through it all as the tale trudges on, but it makes you appreciate a certain type of absurdity in life
Date published: 2018-04-20
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Interesting Read I have read this book twice. Although the humour is great, and the satire even greater, it is at times confusing, especially if you are anything like me and tend to read at any time, sometimes putting the book down halfway through a page.
Date published: 2018-04-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Funny Decent read, remember it being pretty funny and easy to read.
Date published: 2018-03-28
Rated 3 out of 5 by from not my style read the first chapter and couldn't get into the book. maybe reread it later
Date published: 2018-03-08
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great read! Funny and extremely well written. This book is truly a classic.
Date published: 2018-01-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I loved it great funny original and amazing
Date published: 2018-01-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from CLASSIC!! This book passes all generations and truly leaves an impact ! Must Read!!
Date published: 2018-01-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from funny I surprisingly really enjoyed this book, I thought it was very funny, although a bit hard to follow at times.
Date published: 2018-01-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from very cheeky extremely funny and well written, will make you question your own sanity
Date published: 2017-12-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Amazing book a very good book to read, definitely recommend it to everybody
Date published: 2017-12-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Clearly not for everyone Personally, I enjoyed this book. It was sometimes hard to follow and maybe a little repetitive but it's a great story. That being said, a friend of mine who is a voracious reader couldn't get through it.
Date published: 2017-11-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from It shouldn't work, but it does This is a terrible book that I shouldn't love. I love this book. The narrative is all over the place and, at times, seemingly impossible to follow. The whole thing is confusing and shouldn't work. It works and I followed it all. The characters are absurd, as is their dialogue. They are so ridiculously unbelievable, it's almost insulting that Heller expects to buy into them. I bought into them all. Honestly, I can't imagine how hard it must have been to write a book that throws out contradictions with almost every sentence. Heller not only pulled it off, but the man had me outright laughing all through this book. Seriously, none of this should work, yet somehow, Heller brings it all together and turns what could have been an incomprehensible mess into a funny, poignant, and ultimately extremely important work. God, I love this book.
Date published: 2017-11-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Classic if you haven't read yet, what you waiting for
Date published: 2017-10-22
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Classic but difficult to read I want to say that its worth TRYING to read this book, but its really hard to follow at certain points. Maybe it'll be better when I read it a second time.
Date published: 2017-10-12
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Being a classic doesn't always mean it's good While this edition of this book is well made with lots of interesting bonus material at the end, I must say it is an overrated read. I found Heller's writing style and narrative in this incredibly difficult to read, often having to re-read large chunks to see if I was tracking correctly. I questioned if maybe if my read level wasn't quite as up to par as I thought it was, but I actually spoke to other friends who had attempted to read this book, and were well-read themselves, and they said the same thing
Date published: 2017-09-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from One of my favourites Masterfully written satire on war.
Date published: 2017-08-25
Rated 3 out of 5 by from I know you should put this on your must read list, but... I just was not that into it. I know it's a classic, and everyone should read this, but it was just not for me. I am still able to understand why others would read this, which is why it got 3 stars.
Date published: 2017-07-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Made me a better reader I first read this book as a English class assignment in high school. I was dreading it, considering the usual fare that schools foist on us is terrible and overanalysed, but this book changed my worldview. I saw how twisted and hilarious war and humanity could be, often simultaneously. The dark humour and emotional depth made me want to read it over and over again,and it's easy to see how the influencers of our current pop culture took inspiration from this book.
Date published: 2017-07-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great story and written by a superb writer. A true classic.
Date published: 2017-07-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great characters and statements Amazing characters and an excellent anti war novel. A modern classic
Date published: 2017-06-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Liked it Yosarian has to be one of the greatest characters in all of literature. A great read
Date published: 2017-04-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from One crazy-ass book! The book that gave it's name to the phrase! A really funny book packed with memorable characters.
Date published: 2017-04-04
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Funny but not for me. A book never managed to make me laugh out loud. This one did. That being said, it was not as enjoyable as I would have liked it to be.
Date published: 2017-03-21
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Not a fan Didn't find the humour that funny, and couldn't finish. Wouldn't recommend.
Date published: 2017-03-10
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Interesting concept but drags The concept is funny and it is well executed, however, the book is extremely long and over time I lost some interest.
Date published: 2017-02-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing!!! This was excellent. I loved everything about this book!
Date published: 2017-01-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wow! Amazing novel, a must read!
Date published: 2016-12-30
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Long and laborious Way too long. Yossarian's predicament is drawn out and though many of the characters have interesting quirks, I could not not gat into this book
Date published: 2016-12-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Binge Read I love this novel. I've read it so many times and each time I find myself laughing out loud. This is a must read novel, a true classic.
Date published: 2016-12-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Classic Great humor, characters, and message for these dark crazy times - some things never change, and human nature is one of them.
Date published: 2016-12-20
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Difficult If I had my time back I would have not read this book, I forced myself to finish it. It's very difficult to read and understand, glad I never had to read it for school.
Date published: 2016-12-09
Rated 2 out of 5 by from I just could not I just could not connect with the narrative of this book. I have a pretty dry sense of humour and still could not get the punchlines. It was missing a little emotion for me, but that may be just based on my taste! #plumreview
Date published: 2016-12-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Catch 22 Great, fun read. Couldn't put it down. Definitely a favorite of mine.
Date published: 2016-11-29
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Hilarious #plumreview A great dark comedy. A true classic and of the few truly great comic novels. Just the humour as to where the term Catch 22 comes from is worth the price of admission.
Date published: 2016-11-17
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great book! This was a good book, definitely worth the place it holds as an American classic... I highly recommend
Date published: 2015-04-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Strong imagery. Great book. Absurd, sometimes funny but always somewhat tragic.
Date published: 2014-09-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it!!! One of the funniest books I have ever had the pleasure of reading... and re-reading
Date published: 2014-09-07
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A big bang of a book that keeps banging like an ammo belt tossed into a fire Catch-22, which introduced the phrase into the English language, states a seemingly logical proposition that is really contradictory and self-defeating: The World War II American bomber and protagonist Yossarian must be crazy to put himself at risk by flying dangerous missions, yet if he tries to excuse himself from duty, he is proven sane and therefore cannot be relieved. It’s a laughable setup that Heller uses to great comic effect. He also clearly enjoys satirizing all kinds of deserving military characters, mowing them down like a trigger-happy turret-gunner. Catch-22 offers a wide cast of characters and situations, too many to keep straight, and a narrative that is also hard to keep track of at times. His language can be turgid too. It’s hard to read a line like “His globular, exophthalmic eyes were quite distraught” without groaning. That’s easily forgotten by some breathtakingly vivid descriptions of bombing missions, written by a firsthand witness as a WWII bombardier flying missions out of Corsica over Italy. There is also the sheer audacity and funniness of Heller’s situations, to say nothing of the characters who seem too outrageous to be true but in the theatre of war appear quite normal. There is Major Major who, after becoming a major, becomes Major Major Major. He looks like Henry Fonda and does an amazing job of avoiding coming into contact with anyone. Milo Minderbinder is a mess officer and one-man “syndicate” who deals with the enemy to fatten his own trading enterprise and ends up with the problem of chocolate covered Egyptian cotton. The late Christopher Hitchens, in a short essay at the end of this 50th anniversary of the 1961 classic novel, finds echoes in this crazy plot with that of Oliver North, who was caught up in a similar Iran contra arms scheme. (Life imitating art?) We have the soldier Mudd who was supposed to share Yossarian’s tent but died in combat before he could be registered. The army doesn’t recognize this “unknown soldier who never had a chance” and so officially it isn’t clear if there even is a Mudd (pun intended). Colonel Cathcart, Yossarian’s nemesis who keeps increasing the number of missions bombardiers must fly before they can be sent home, virtually ensuring they never get out alive, is a “slick, successful, slipshod, unhappy man of thirty-six who lumbered when he walked and wanted to be a general.” Doc Daneeka is afraid to fly because “in an airplane there was absolutely no place in the world to go except to another part of the airplane." He is declared dead from a mission that he didn’t participate in and his war widow reaps the benefits, refusing to believe his telegrams that he’s alive. We have a mysterious “soldier in white” who is encased in bandages in a hospital and may or may not be dead, may or may not be even inside the bandages. We have crazy prostitutes, a lusty nurse and photographer and at least one decent character, Chaplain Tappman. Heller introduces him in the first line of the novel by writing how “It was love at first sight” from the time Yossarian saw the chaplain “and fell madly in love with him.” So many situations, so many madmen and women, so much goddamned funny stuff. Problem is, war isn’t funny. It’s hell. And through your tears of laughter, Heller forces your eyes open to what hell looks like, where men fly “through swollen masses of new and old bursts of flak like rats racing in a pack through their own droppings.” Hell is especially vivid as the novel draws to a conclusion where Yossarian witnesses a host of horrors on the streets of Rome. It’s as if he left the pages of this novel and entered one of Dante’s circles of hell. The solution to Yossarian’s Catch-22 is perhaps the weakest part of the novel, as critic Robert Brustein points out in another essay. But it doesn’t mar Heller’s lampooning of a military bureaucracy and the foolishness of war. The author dishes it all out along with a message to those who, like Yossarian, find themselves getting tripped up in Catch-22. It’s that Catch-22 doesn’t exist, as the hero finds out, “but it made no difference. What did matter was that everyone thought that it existed, and that was much worse, for there was no object or text to ridicule or refute, to accuse, criticize, attack, amend, hate, revile, spit at, rip to shreds, trample upon or burn up.” Catch-22 is a wonderfully funny and jarring big bang of a book that keeps banging like an ammo belt tossed into a fire. It’s also wonderfully humane and Yossarian’s desperate attempt to survive and do right is noble. Near the end, Major Danby advises him to keep his values although “people are sometimes not so good.” Yossarian rejects the advice: “When I look up, I see people cashing in. I don’t see heaven or saints or angels. I see people cashing in on every decent impulse and every human tragedy.” There’s nothing funny about that.
Date published: 2013-04-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best book This my favourite book of all time. It is ridiculous and hilarious!
Date published: 2013-02-22