The Catcher In The Rye by J. D. Salinger and Looking For Alaska by John Green

1718 Words 7 Pages
Throughout history, authors of young adult literature are oftentimes forced to incorporate the perils of young adulthood into their plots, characters, and conflicts. Growing up in America is an experience unlike no other. Today, American young adults are part of a large generation called the Millenials, who are considered the most educated in American history. They are more open minded, progressive, successful, and technological. However, it is not all sunshine and rainbows for these young Americans who oftentimes have outstanding debt and job prospects that are unacceptably dim. In multiple ways, the reality for a young Millenial in America parallels the life of a young adult born during the Silent Generation, a generation characterized …show more content…
Holden has an internal struggle with his emotions and his perspective of the real world. Holden views the world around him as a façade. Throughout the novel, he repeatedly refers to the people in his world as “phonies.” Holden isolates himself from the rest of the world and, oftentimes, his thoughts are full of self-hatred. In Holden’s narrative, he discusses the death of his brother Allie many times and it becomes clear to the reader that one of the biggest causes of Holden’s estranged views of the world is his inability to deal with his brother’s demise. While Holden doesn’t necessarily blame himself, he regrets not spending time with his brother. He says:
“I started talking, sort of out loud, to Allie. I do that sometimes when I get very depressed. I keep telling him to go home and get his bike and meet me in front of Bobby Fallon’s house … Allie heard us talking about [going to shoot BB guns at Lake Sedebego], and he wanted to go, and I wouldn’t let him. I told him he was a child. So once in a while, now, when I get very depressed, I keep saying to him, ‘Okay, go get your bike and meet me in front of Bobby’s house. Hurry up’” (Salinger, 99).
Holden projects his frustration about his brother’s death on the world as a way of expressing his sadness and loneliness.
The second half of John Green’s soul-searching tale, Looking For…