After the surprise success of Pride & Prejudice & Zombies, small publishers have been scrambling to create "new / old" books. One of the hottest titles was a completely unauthorized follow-up to Catcher in the Rye called 60 Years Later.
Not surprisingly, publication of the book has halted by the courts after J.D. Salinger filed a lawsuit to protect his masterpiece (Frank Portman would disagree with that statement).
Not only has the New York Post been covering the story, but they also published a recent photograph of the reclusive author. Yes, that's him in the photograph.
It's not a parody, it's not a critique -- and it's not for sale, a Manhattan federal judge said yesterday in temporarily barring publication of an unauthorized follow-up to J.D. Salinger's "Catcher in the Rye."
Judge Deborah Batts slammed Fredrik Colting, the Swedish author of the book -- who uses the pen name J.D. California -- and his publishers, saying their claims that "60 Years Later: Coming Through the Rye" is a critical examination of central character Holden Caulfield were "problematic and lacking in credibility."
The judge's 37-page ruling -- which remains in effect until the case can be decided at trial -- sided decisively with reclusive "Catcher in the Rye" author Salinger, who filed a lawsuit blasting "60 Years Later" as "a rip-off, pure and simple" of his 1951 classic.
"In addition to the use of Caulfield as protagonist, '60 Years' depends upon similar and sometimes nearly identical supporting characters, settings, tone, and plot devices to create a narrative that largely mirrors that of 'Catcher,' " Batts wrote.
She said the 90-year-old Salinger -- who was recently confined to a rehab center after breaking a hip -- "is likely to succeed on the merits" of his copyright-infringement claim, "as well as the presumption of irreparable harm."
"Defendants have taken well more from 'Catcher,' in both substance and style, than is necessary for the alleged transformative purpose of criticizing Salinger and his attitudes and behavior," Batts wrote.
"60 Years Later" was set for publication in the United States late this summer before Salinger -- who has steadfastly refused to license the rights to his novel -- filed suit.
During a court hearing last month, Batts said she had read both books and agreed with Salinger -- who did not attend -- that the new book was substantially similar to his own.