Heller, Joseph (Paperback - 1996 )
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.

Item Details

Baker & Taylor
Presents the contemporary classic depicting the struggles of a United States airman attempting to survive the lunacy and depravity of a World War II airbase.

Simon and Schuster
Catch-22 is like no other novel. It is one of the funniest books ever written, a keystone work in American literature, and even added a new term to the dictionary.

At the heart of Catch-22 resides the incomparable, malingering bombardier, Yossarian, a hero endlessly inventive in his schemes to save his skin from the horrible chances of war. His efforts are perfectly understandable because as he furiously scrambles, thousands of people he hasn't even met are trying to kill him. His problem is Colonel Cathcart, who keeps raising the number of missions the men must fly to complete their service. Yet if Yossarian makes any attempts to excuse himself from the perilous missions that he is committed to flying, he is trapped by the Great Loyalty Oath Crusade, the hilariously sinister bureaucratic rule from which the book takes its title: a man is considered insane if he willingly continues to fly dangerous combat missions, but if he makes the necessary formal request to be relieved of such missions, the very act of making the request proves that he is sane and therefore ineligible to be relieved.

Catch-22 is a microcosm of the twentieth-century world as it might look to some one dangerously sane -- a masterpiece of our time.

Authors: Heller, Joseph
Statement of Responsibility: Joseph Heller
Title: Catch-22
Publisher: New York, NY :, Simon & Schuster,, 1996, c1994
Characteristics: 463 p. ; 21 cm.
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Report This Mar 02, 2014
  • avratt rated this: 1.5 stars out of 5.

Probably the single most over-rated "classic" I've ever suffered through. It seems that nonsensical has been confused with humor. I get the feeling that most of its praises come from those who have only read other praises rather than the book itself.

Report This Jan 09, 2014
  • anthonybencivengo rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Arguably the funniest novel ever written , undeniably the funniest disturbing and tragic novel ever written. Its scathing, irreverent wit cuts as cleanly today as it did 50 years ago.

A big bang of a book that keeps banging like an ammo belt tossed into a fire. http://community.indigo.ca/posts/Claudio-DAndrea/user-578557/651646.html

Report This Dec 06, 2013
  • miss_moneypenny rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

This is my favourite book! I think the back cover copy describes it as "a nightmarish comedy" and that pretty much sums it up. It moves from dry and clever humour, through eccentrics and randomness, to heartbreak and horror. I remember thinking I wouldn't like this when it was first recommended to me because I wasn't a fan of military fiction or books about war. I couldn't have been more wrong!

Report This Nov 07, 2013
  • 21168035271733DDV rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

This is one of the best novels I've read in a long time. It uses Kafkaesque black humor to expose the absurdity of war, military bureaucracy and authority, but with a hilarity that Kafka did not use. The characters are carictures, as is appropriate in a book of humor, and yet they are fleshed out enough that I felt their pains and sorrows. The nonlinearity will put some readers off, but it works beautifully in getting Heller's points across. I highly recommend it.

Report This Oct 30, 2013
  • MCinnamon rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

Considered one of the greatest novels of the 20th century but to me it was repetative at times and every character seems 2 dimentional and self serving. A good editor could have gotten rid of at least 25% of this book and streamlined the story telling by not retelling of incidents of previous chapters almost exactly alike except adding a few lines of new detail, only to 50 pages later tell the episode once again and repeat almost word for word except add a new detail. I wasted too much time on 200 of the 400 page novel that were repeat. Don't believe the hype about this being a great book, its only ok. Maybe the movie is better.

Report This Sep 10, 2013
  • madmikethb rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

A masterpiece of comedy but also very well structured. A classic.

This book was very layered and funny!

Report This Jun 08, 2012
  • harkij rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

What's there to say about this book that hasn't already been said? I could summarize the plot, but it wouldn't do you any good, because the plot doesn't really matter. The novel's main objective is to reveal the absurdity of humanity, government bureaucracy, and war. The book is entirely made up of puns, elaborate contradictions and moronic axioms. The characters are laughable, despicable, greedy, lusty, and pitiful. Most people will tell you that you'll either love it or hate it. Some critics would say that this novel was a real feather in his cap for Joseph Heller. Others will say is was black eye.

Report This Sep 07, 2011
  • kstiles rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

This book is hilarious and I loved the ending!

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Report This Oct 23, 2008
  • Dylan J. Knoll rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Coarse Language: This title contains Coarse Language.

Report This Oct 23, 2008
  • Dylan J. Knoll rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Sexual Content: This title contains Sexual Content.


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Report This Dec 06, 2013
  • miss_moneypenny rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

“The frog is almost five hundred million years old. Could you really say with much certainty that America, with all its strength and prosperity, with its fighting man that is second to none, and with its standard of living that is highest in the world, will last as long as...the frog? ”

Report This Jun 08, 2012
  • harkij rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

The soldier who saw everything twice nodded weakly and sank back on his bed. Yossarian nodded weakly too, eyeing his talented roommate with great humility and admiration. He knew he was in the presence of a master. His talented roommate was obviously a person to be studied and emulated. During the night, his talented roommate died, and Yossarian decided that he had followed him far enough. "I see everything once!" he cried quickly.

Report This Jul 17, 2010
  • hippyheart rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

I love the smell of napalm in the morning. Good morning Vietnam!

Report This Feb 20, 2009
  • DavidB rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

Major Major had been born too late and too mediocre. Some men are born mediocre, some men achieve mediocrity, and some men have mediocrity thrust upon them. With Major Major it had been all three. Even among men lacking all distinction he inevitably stood out as a man lacking more distinction than all the rest, and people who met him were always impressed by how unimpressive he was.

Report This Oct 23, 2008
  • Dylan J. Knoll rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

There was only one catch and that was Catch-22, which specified that a concern for one's own safety in the face of dangers that were real and immediate was the process of a rational mind. Orr was crazy and could be grounded. All he had to do was ask; and as soon as he did, he would no longer be crazy and would have to fly more missions. Orr would be crazy to fly more missions and sane if he didn't, but if he was sane he had to fly them. If he flew them he was crazy and didn't have to; but if he didn't want to he was sane and had to. Yossarian was moved very deeply by the absolute simplicity of this clause of Catch-22 and let out a respectful whistle.


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