"Salinger is an important writer, not a great genius -- not like Nabokov or Dostoyevsky," said three-time Pulitzer winning novelist Joyce Carol Oates, who has published more than 50 books since 1963.
"He was a good writer and did well, but what he did was very narrow. He almost seems to have thought he was Shakespeare or Melville, but he was not on that level."
The author, considered by some to be the voice of a generation, may have had "an extremely inflated vision of his own talent," according to Oates, 71, who teaches creative writing at Princeton University.
Strong words from a gal who hasn't written a great book since 1969. ...Also, as bjkeefe notes in comments, Joyce has been nominated for Pulitzer three times, but has not yet won.