by Joseph Heller
From 1961, this is already a classic, but I wonder just how far it can go into the annals of history. As far as I'm concerned, it's the definitive novel about war in the modern era, a work of comic genius and brilliant insight (there's a reason why the phrase "catch-22" was instantly adopted into the lexicon). Here's a little catch-22 about my particular copy of Catch-22: I originally borrowed my brother's copy when I read it several years ago, and so I returned that one in good faith, but loved the book so much I knew I had to have one of my own. Several years later, I found a copy in a bookstore reduction sale, the catch being that it was defective, with a notable printing error, Chapters 13, 14, and 15 (or about thirty pages) missing. I bought it anyway. Unique edition, right? When I eventually read it again, I won't know what I'm missing anyway...
Bookshelf status: technically, read.