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Books PopWrapped | Books

Three Previously Unpublished JD Salinger Short Stories Leaked Online

PopWrapped | PopWrapped Author


11/30/2013 9:20 am
PopWrapped | Books
Three Previously Unpublished JD Salinger Short Stories Leaked Online

Anna Walters

Staff Writer

J.D. Salinger, the author of The Catcher in the Rye, influenced literature in the modern era and his novel still appears on many readers’ bookshelves. What you may not know is: he left more unseen pages behind! According to the BBC, “three short stories by J.D. Salinger, which the reclusive author did not want published, have been leaked online.” The collection of stories include: “The Ocean Full of Bowling Balls,” “Paula,” and “Birthday Boy.” Although the stories were only available to read at libraries in two American universities—the University of Texas and Princeton University—a scanned copy appeared on a file-sharing website this week. The collection titled, Three Stories, quickly spread online due to its open access. “At least two of the stories in the collection were ‘the real deal’,” vouched David Ulin, book critic with the Los Angeles Times, when speaking with the BBC. Ulin added: “It's more difficult to imagine how a manuscript was copied from the Princeton Library, but in this digital age, I have little doubt that it could be done." Along with the three short stories, Three Stories also contains a letter Salinger wrote to his publisher Little, Brown and Company, in which he discusses proof copies of his works. “The Ocean Full of Bowling Balls” is a prequel to The Catcher in the Rye, and focuses on the death of Kenneth, Holden Caulfield’s younger brother who is later renamed Allie in the subsequent novel. Salinger desired a private life and stopped publishing his work in the year 1965. He removed himself from public view, but it is believed that he continued to write. The author even left specific instructions that “his unpublished stories should not be seen for 50 years after he died.” The author, in his final interview back in 1980, stated, “There's a marvelous peace in not publishing. When you publish, the world thinks you owe something. If you don't publish, they don't know what you're doing. You can keep it for yourself." It is believed that a discussion of the Three Stories leak first appeared on Reddit. It later made news on Buzzfeed where they announced that “The leaker says the source was a mysterious eBay auction, and Salinger scholar Kenneth Slawenski has confirmed for BuzzFeed that they are truly Salinger’s unpublished stories”. Thanks to the anonymous user who distributed the scan, readers can delight in Salinger’s beautiful language. Although you may feel guilty, let’s hope Salinger wouldn’t mind the compliments. Here is a quote from Three Stories that Buzzfeed recently posted: “His face got triumphant—the way Kenneth’s face got triumphant; without implications of his having defeated or outdrawn anybody. The ocean was terrible now. It was full of bowling balls.”


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