SO I put up a little salinger in the below post, just in case you know half the world's computer servers get bombed but this one is still workinig.
Hapworth 16 1924 is amazing. It's pretty hard to describe. Basically its like the complete outpour of a genius child, a 40-page single-spaced .doc that it seems was written within an hour or so (26,000 words) and is all about Seymour and his amazing thoughts on everything in the world. Sometimes it seems like Salinger's channeling Finnegans' Wake with the rapid flow and rhythm of it.
Franny and Zooey and Nine Stories don't need to be talked about how good they are. I just want to say that in general right now I am feeling that Salinger really is the best American writer, even though all he ever published is those four little white books above. And I can't help but wonder that his masterpiece will come out, say a 700-word long nove, three of them, or longer, a several-thousands page series, and it will be the best book ever written. But on the other hand.
Hapworth is brilliant, its perfect, and its incredible. That was 44 years ago. I mean.
How did he become someone who refused to see people, or reporters or whatever, or leave Cornish? It bespeaks a certain insanity. I mean, he must be kind of fucked up if that's his situation, and there must be something wrong with him as a person and as a writer. He must have some deeply obscure flaw.
I mean, look into his eyes in this photo -- they're frightening, he's an insane and frightening old man.