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Review: Catch-22 by Joseph Heller

Unphilosophize By Unphilosophize Published on May 4, 2017

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This article was updated on July 11, 2017

This book was a lot more rough than I anticipated. It was, in some ways harder to read than the other two books I read in February. 


For those of you who don't know, Catch-22 takes place on a Greek Island during the Second World War and is about bombing pilots. In their contract there is a catch, Catch-22, "there was only one catch and that was Catch-22, which specified that a concern for one's 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." This is the premise that the whole novel is based around, people who are crazy who want to fly their missions and people who don't want to fly their missions because they're sane who aren't able to get out of it.


It covered so much ground. The idea around Catch-22 take on many different forms throughout the novel. It looks at what love is. It looks at trading. It touches on suicide and depression.


I found the ending very dissatisfying. It happened very quickly and left a cliff hanger. Apparently there is a second book called Closing Time so I'll have to check that out to see if that answers any of my questions.

I rate this book an 8 out of 10. It was really enjoyable to read. In many ways it was like an episode of M*A*S*H in book form which is pretty awesome. There's lots of foolishness and fun. This is a book that i'll probably read again.

Lost soul. Graduated with my Bachelor of Arts Combined Honours in the History of Science and Technology, and Philosophy in May 2016. Enjoys math, knitting, and baseball. Avid reader and ... Show More

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