I finished Catch-22 this week and I would have to say that it’s not the book I remember it being. It isn’t as poignant as I remember thinking it was. It is clever at times and potentially more moving for another generation but I am not even sure of that. I can sympathize with war time trials and the struggles of soldiers in battle to at least an extent that I feel would let me feel for these characters plight. In general it was horrible but the overall feel of the book left me thinking it was just a comedy of errors.
At the heart of Catch-22 resides the incomparable, malingering bombardier, Yossarian, a hero endlessly inventive in his schemes to save his skin from the horrible chances of war. His problem is Colonel Cathcart, who keeps raising the number of missions the men must fly to complete their service. Yet if Yossarian makes any attempts to excuse himself from the perilous missions that he is committed to flying, he is trapped by the Great Loyalty Oath Crusade, the bureaucratic rule from which the book takes its title: a man is considered insane if he willingly continues to fly dangerous combat missions, but if he makes the necessary formal request to be relieved of such missions, the very act of making the request proves that he is sane and therefore ineligible to be relieved.
For it to be the classic that it is I am sure there is more I could have taken from it but at least for now I will leave it at it was an interesting read and I am glad to have revisited it for the sake of having the literary pieces in my arsenal.