"An astonishingly brilliant work."
Tough and beautiful and heartbreaking, this is as scarily relevant to our world today as the 1930's depression era America it depicts.
"Simply the best"
This was one of the best books I have ever listened to. I will buy the book and read it properly now. The characters, the stories, the historical references, the story, the ending - all just magnificent.
"Amazing. Awesome. Harrowing. powerful."
What can I say? Everyone should read this book. So sad and yet beautifully done
"Gripping and heartwrenching migrant insight"
I really was blown away by Steinbeck's lucid prose but especially the excruciatingly vivid insights into the appalling plight of the migrants, equally relevant today. I was surprised how much this book gripped me. Steinbeck does sometimes picture scenes in rich detail which can make the pace seem slow at the start but this is absolutely worth sticking with because the tension ratchets up as their situation worsens and it adds to the painful suspense.
I thought the Joad family were really brought to life by the different voices used by the excellent narrator. All in all I would highly recommend this - not just for a compelling story but for the thought-provoking illumination of the emotional and physical struggle of any migrants forced from their homes against their will.
"What can you say?"
Brilliant reading of Steinbeck's classic. The reader's voice melts away as the storyline leaps off the page and the characters become real and their plight immediate. Like his contemporary, George Orwell, Steinbeck's political message suffuses his writing and like Orrwell his lightness of touch means this just adds to the drama. If like many, you read this book in your youth I recommend you read it again as an adult. The struggle of the Joad family and their bitter, rapid journey from being kindly, proud farmers to a life of impoverished misery is as important to understand now as it was in thirties America.
Incredible experience, couldn't be more appropriate for the times we are now in. Man's struggle against Corporate greed. Steinbeck is a genius of a writer and this a read beautifully.
Thank you for the journey.
"As shocking now as it was then"
I came to this novel with some ideas of what to expect - I knew it was long, and I knew it was regarded as Steinbeck's most important work. Despite these preconceived ideas I was blown away.
The tale itself shouldn't be that effecting. It is fairly standard Steinbeck territory - people moving through their world, not rich, trying to make their way. They encounter a vast cast of others also making their way. But, the Joad family become more than just characters as you see their ups and downs.
Anyone in their right mind feels the anger and injustice at how the Joads are treated and the things they come to have to do to just subsist. Steinbeck highlights this through social consciousness musing through and about his characters. As in many things, he is almost prophetic.
In our current world, the plight of other migrant communities and the welcome they receive springs to mind. As it should. This isn't meant to be a nice read - the message is one of pity and rage. Worthwhile for the ideas as much as the story.
"I cried at the end. One of the best written!"
It must have been Steinbeck who coined the phrase "What doesn't kill you, makes you stronger"
If you read only one book in your life, read this one.
"Refugee crisis from an earlier era"
The audio version was certainly easy to listen to and fit into my schedule. I think I would struggle to keep going for such a long book in the print edition. It was very well read.
The moment when they realised how many other families had turned up for the same limited number of jobs was heart-breaking.
John Chancer managed to create a range of voices that were consistent so that the characters were recognisable from the voice he created.
Trump - good Americans have been refugees too.
I found it uncanny how the misfortune of this generation of American migrants is similar to the hardship faced by migrants today. Americans should read this story again to see that they too have suffered hardship in the past through no fault of their own.
"Farage needs to read this!!"
The most timelessly relevant book I have read in years. That it eschews a traditional structure only adds to its genius. And talk about female characters in Literature! Ma is a tour de force. Of Mice and Men means even more for the reading of it.