I am a 65-year-old psychologist, married for 25 years, with two sons who are 25 and 22. I love reviewing the books and the feedback I get.
This is an American classic, and one of the funniest books ever written. Its satiric look at the military is relentless. Heller makes fun of just about everybody and everything. Many of us will remember the movie, which was excellent, but the book gives us many more hours of enjoyment. Jay O. Sanders is a terrific narrator. He delivers the lines with wit and insight into Heller's thinking, and is tremendously entertaining. There are so many characters in the book who are unique and memorable that it is impossible to do them justice. The protagonist, Yossarian (played to perfection in the movie by the great Alan Arkin), is a creation of the highest level of genius. Heller creates snarky fun out of situations which have made other men feel doomed. Chaplain Tapman is a gentle man who can't make heads or tails of his post. Major Major Major is unforgettable. Captain Hmm Hmm Decoverley: who else on earth could think of a name like that? The ugliness of World War II is presented from the viewpoint of the young men who fly bombers over Italy and Germany. Heller's ability to see their predicament from a kind, gentle point of view does not at all diminish the horror of bombing and its results. No one else could create humor like this. Do yourself a favor. This is a unique work of art.
I read this book in its paper form some years ago and thoroughly enjoyed it. I felt this version would be good for the car and it would be fun to read it again. This rendition is absolutely worthwhile - the story is still excellent and fresh but the reader is so good it would be worth listening just for his range. Not to be missed!
I almost gave up on this book before finishing Part 1 of 3, but I'm glad that I stuck it out to finish the entire thing. The first part was very confusing to me because of all the different characters that were introduced. It was nearly impossible to keep them all straight. I also started to get annoyed at the circular-logic humor (hence "Catch-22") that seemed like a constant Abbott and Costello "Who's on First" routine. What kept me going was the narrator. He was absolutely fantastic with all the different voices he was able to portray. It really helped me to catch on to the different characters and get deeply involved with the book. You really come to appreciate the narrator when you listen to the final chapter in the audiobook, which are excerpts from "Catch-22" read by the original author, Joseph Heller. While he was able to write a classic book, he was absolutely boring to listen to.
"If 'tis a sin, I don't give a Fiddler's fart!" -Frank McCourt.
Some part of it was "kind of" funny (and I use the word funny loosely here). The rest of it was just annoying. I kept wating for some kind of big reveal or something interesting to happen at the end, unfortunately It never came together for me.
After reading the reviews, I was really looking forward to finally enjoy this book. Seems to me that every character in the story belong in some type of nut house, and the fact that it took place in a military setting makes the whole thing seem far-fetched and more confusing as to how any officers of the US Air Force would behave in such rediculous manner and get away with it?
One of the worst stories I've heard. It couldn't end soon enough. Maybe an abridged version would be tolerable.
The book is great, and is duly recognized as such. What I need to write about is the narrator: he does such an excellent job with the fast paced and hilarious conversation, with the voices and personalities of the characters, and with voice emphasis on various aspects of the text, that hearing him is such a thrilling experience. This is not an easy book to act out, but this narrator has managed it superbly.
It is rare that you hear an actor perform a well written story, not because of the shortage of actors, but because of the shortage of good stories. This is one instance where the novel met its match!
Jay Sanders reads this with force and clarity - deftly characterizing dozens of personalities. The power of the book comes through loud and clear.
The problem with the order of chapters has now been fixed, and the book is presented in its entirety and the proper order.
The book (and this audio presentation of it) is brilliant. Get it. You'd be hard pressed to find a better way to spend 20 hours.
While the narrator overall does a good job, there are galling instances where he misreads. "Okay, Joe, she purred" is what's written. "Okay Joe, she putted" is what is narrated. Or "first" for "fist." Word for word readings likely are impossible, but when the sense is lost or diverted...