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Catcher in the Rye Quotes

So what I did, I wrote about my brother Allie’s baseball mitt. It was a very descriptive subject. It really was. My brother Allie had this left-handed fielder’s mitt. He was left-handed. The thing that was descriptive about it, though, was that he had poems written all over the fingers and the pocket and everywhere. In green ink. He wrote them on it so that he’d have something to read when he was in the field and nobody was up at bat. He’s dead now. He got leukemia and died when we were up in Maine, on July 18, 1946. You’d have liked him. He was two years younger than I was, but he was about fifty times as intelligent. He was terrifically intelligent. His teachers were always writing letters to my mother, telling her what a pleasure it was having a boy like Allie in their class. And they weren’t just shooting the crap. They really meant it. But it wasn’t just that he was the most intelligent member in the family. He was also the nicest, in lots of ways. He never got mad at anybody. […] God, he was a nice kid, though. He used to laugh so hard at something he thought of at the dinner table that he just about fell off his chair.

J. D. Salinger

The Catcher in the Rye. Holden Caulfield in Chapter 5. Holden cannot understand why his brother Allie who was much cleverer than him died. He feels guilty that he, who lives because he is not sick like Allie was, is stupid and inferior. The baseball glove reminds him of the kind of person his brother was: smart, friendly and inventive. This is the emotion at the center of Holden’s journey throughout the novel.
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