With an introduction by Howard Jacobson. Explosive, subversive, wild and funny, 50 years on the novel's strength is undiminished. Reading Joseph Heller's classic satire is nothing less than a rite of passage. Set in the closing months of World War II in an American bomber squadron off the coast of Italy, Catch-22 is the story of a bombardier named Yossarian who is frantic and furious because thousands of people he has never even met keep trying to kill him. Joseph Heller's bestselling novel is a hilarious and tragic satire on military madness, and the tale of one man's efforts to survive it.
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(198mm x 129mm x 33mm)
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Country of Publication:
UK Kirkus Review »
Catch-22 has been canonized since its first modest print run of 30,000 copies. It spoke to the Vietnam generation in 1961 with its savage, masculine humour and heartfelt indictment of the grotesque lunacy of warfare. The eponymous Catch-22 states that a man can be exempted from bombing missions if he is mad, but that the desire to be exempted is proof that he is sane. (It would have crept into the English language as Catch-18 but for Leon Uris's novel Mila 18 - Heller wanted to avoid possible mix-ups.) The cavortings of Captain Yossarian with officers, men and Roman prostitutes on the island of Pianosa drive the plot as he desperately tries to reason his way out of imminent death. (Kirkus UK)
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Author Biography - Joseph Heller
Joseph Heller was born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1923. In 1961, he published Catch-22, which became a bestseller and, in 1970, a film. He went on to write such novels as Something Happened, God Knows, Picture This, Closing Time (the sequel to Catch-22), and Portrait of an Artist, as an Old Man. Heller died in December 1999.