A Novel

eBook - 1999
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Fifty years after its original publication, Catch-22 remains a cornerstone of American lit-erature and one of the funniest--and most celebrated--novels of all time. In recent years it has been named to "best novels" lists by Time, Newsweek, the Modern Library, and the London Observer . Set in Italy during World War II, this is the story of the incomparable, malingering bombardier, Yossarian, a hero who is furious because thousands of people he has never met are trying to kill him. But his real problem is not the enemy--it is his own army, which keeps increasing the number of missions the men must fly to complete their service. Yet if Yossarian makes any attempt to excuse himself from the perilous missions he's assigned, he'll be in violation of Catch-22, a hilariously sinister bureaucratic rule: a man is considered insane if he willingly continues to fly dangerous combat missions, but if he makes a formal request to be removed from duty, he is proven sane and therefore ineligible to be relieved. Since its publication in 1961, no novel has matched Catch-22 's intensity and brilliance in depicting the brutal insanity of war. This fiftieth-anniversary edition commemorates Joseph Heller's masterpiece with a new introduction by Christopher Buckley; personal essays on the genesis of the novel by the author; a wealth of critical responses and reviews by Norman Mailer, Alfred Kazin, Anthony Burgess, and others; rare papers and photos from Joseph Heller's personal archive; and a selection of advertisements from the original publishing campaign that helped turn Catch-22 into a cultural phenomenon. Here, at last, is the definitive edition of a classic of world literature.
Publisher: New York : Simon & Schuster, [1999], c1955.
ISBN: 9781451632965
Characteristics: 1 online resource.
Additional Contributors: OverDrive, Inc

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Jan 04, 2018

One of my favorite satires.

Jul 17, 2017

I've often felt there are some things in life that are a litmus test for having a bright mind and this book is one of them. It's in my top ten list of the greatest novels of all time.

Mar 28, 2017

This book has the most hilarious dialogue, circular arguments, and the like. I definitely recommend it.

Jan 04, 2017

This book is absolute genius, although it may take more than one read to fully appreciate it as such. Joseph Heller spent TEN YEARS writing it, and I can honestly say that each time I read it (just finished re-reading it for the 4th time) I discover new connections that I didn't realize were there before. Often cited as the best book of the 20th century, Catch-22 is incredible. Check out for a literary analysis of the book, and an annotated bibliography.

Oct 05, 2016

Very witty and entertaining. I got a little tired of the wit toward the end.

Jun 24, 2016

The beginning was enjoyable and thought provoking, but the end seemed to get lost down its own rabbit hole.

leonyin Apr 23, 2016

I can't remember another book that made me lose it in public. I wish it never ended.

Feb 21, 2016

Brilliant! Dark , funny and well ahead of its time. I most certainly will purchase this book for my shelves so I can read it again. A true classic that just made my best of list!

CMLibrary_akeller Jan 19, 2016

I understand why people like this book and the purpose behind it and what he is saying about war and stuff like that. However, I personally did not really like this book. I didn't care about any of the characters (except maybe the chaplain) and some of the characters made me frustrated. I couldn't care less about what Yossarian was trying to accomplish or whatever. This book was just not for me.

Dec 29, 2015

Not a bad book. The begginning is trash but it gets way better at the middle and is good by the end. I think the book was a bit milked out and couldve been shorter. I bet the author was thinking, "i need to make this book longer so it looks good." So he made it an extra ~10 chapters long of repetitous mumbo jumbo that nobody cares about. Really? But other then that, funny, sad, and wierd at other times. I reccomend it, but remember, the first part of the book is super boring. Get through that, and you should enjoy the book.

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Jan 04, 2017

"it was neither possible nor necessary to educate people who never questioned anything."

Dec 06, 2013

“The frog is almost five hundred million years old. Could you really say with much certainty that America, with all its strength and prosperity, with its fighting man that is second to none, and with its standard of living that is highest in the world, will last as long as...the frog? ”

Jun 08, 2012

The soldier who saw everything twice nodded weakly and sank back on his bed. Yossarian nodded weakly too, eyeing his talented roommate with great humility and admiration. He knew he was in the presence of a master. His talented roommate was obviously a person to be studied and emulated. During the night, his talented roommate died, and Yossarian decided that he had followed him far enough.

"I see everything once!" he cried quickly.

hippyheart Jul 17, 2010

I love the smell of napalm in the morning.

Good morning Vietnam!

Feb 20, 2009

Major Major had been born too late and too mediocre. Some men are born mediocre, some men achieve mediocrity, and some men have mediocrity thrust upon them. With Major Major it had been all three. Even among men lacking all distinction he inevitably stood out as a man lacking more distinction than all the rest, and people who met him were always impressed by how unimpressive he was.

Dylan J. Knoll
Oct 23, 2008

There was only one catch and that was Catch-22, which specified that a concern for one's own safety in the face of dangers that were real and immediate was the process of a rational mind. Orr was crazy and could be grounded. All he had to do was ask; and as soon as he did, he would no longer be crazy and would have to fly more missions. Orr would be crazy to fly more missions and sane if he didn't, but if he was sane he had to fly them. If he flew them he was crazy and didn't have to; but if he didn't want to he was sane and had to. Yossarian was moved very deeply by the absolute simplicity of this clause of Catch-22 and let out a respectful whistle.


Add Notices

Jan 04, 2017

Frightening or Intense Scenes: There are several scenes that depict a bombardier dying from shrapnel in gruesome detail.

Dylan J. Knoll
Oct 23, 2008

Coarse Language: This title contains Coarse Language.

Dylan J. Knoll
Oct 23, 2008

Sexual Content: This title contains Sexual Content.

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Jan 04, 2017

okridgway thinks this title is suitable for 17 years and over


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Jan 04, 2017

Set in the midst of World War II, Catch-22 is a satirical novel about the folly of humanity and the bureaucratic lunacies that exist throughout society. (Check out for all things catch-22)

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