#8: Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
I’ve used the phrase “it’s a Catch-22” for as long as I can remember, but I have no recollection of learning what it meant or it’s place of origin. So needless to say, it was fun to read this book and discover exactly how the term came to be used in everyday language. The novel is a classic and while I did not find it as funny as I thought I would, the story does put a lot of American life, experience, and problems into perspective. The one line that continues to resonate with me involves the protagonist Yossarian. It reads: “he was jeopardizing his traditional rights of freedom and independence simply by daring to exercise them.” I think that line was true when Heller wrote the book in 1963 and rings equally true today as our country consistently pushes (or restricts) the ethical boundaries of war and what it means to live in a democratic society.
In other news, I think I’m going to take a break from reading war related stories for a while.