By Stan Schroeder2013-11-28 09:23:11 UTC
Three unpublished stories by the famously reclusive American writer, J.D. Salinger, have leaked online after appearing on an eBay auction.
The , which ended Sep. 23, 2013, advertised a book containing three stories, titled "Untitled or Paula," "Birthday Boy," and "The Ocean Full of Bowling Balls". The first two stories are dated 1941 and 1946, respectively, while the third one doesn't have a date.
The auction, which had the items located in Brentford, London, UK, was ultimately won for $109.88.
Now, the scan of the book has appeared on (members-only) torrent site what.CD and in the form of an Imgur album which was posted on
The stories, while unpublished, are not completely new to scholars -- they were available to read under supervision at the Princeton University library and the University of Texas's Harry Ransom Center. BuzzFeed Kenneth Slawenski, who has confirmed their authenticity .
"While I do quibble with the ethics (or lack of ethics) in posting the Salinger stories, they look to be true transcripts of the originals and match my own copies," said Slawenski.
The importance of the leak is enormous. Salinger was almost completely out of public view in the last 45 years of his lilfe -- he published his last original work in 1965, and died in 2010. However, throughout the years there were constant rumors that the author was actually writing all this time -- including some sort of follow-up to the amazingly successful novel "The Catcher in the Rye".
One of the three stories unearthed today, "The Ocean Full of Bowling Balls," is exactly that, as it deals with the death of Kenneth Caulfield, also known as Allie and brother of the main protagonist Holden Caulfield from "The Catcher in the Rye".
Salinger's family was scheduled to publish some of the author's works in 2015 and onwards, but this particular story -- as per the terms of Salinger's donation to Princeton University -- cannot be published earlier than 2060.
We'll probably hear a lot more about these three stories in the days ahead. Besides the literary importance of the works, one of the burning questions is the origin of the stories, and how they ended up in the UK.
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Image: Mandel Ngan/Getty Images, eBay
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