This sprawling and often brutal novel, set in the rich farmlands of California's Salinas Valley, follows the intertwined destinies of two families - the Trasks and the Hamiltons - whose generations helplessly reenact the fall of Adam and Eve and the poisonous rivalry of Cain and Abel.
©1952 John Steinbeck; Renewed 1980 Elaine Steinbeck, Thom Steinbeck, and John Steinbeck IV (P)2011 Penguin Audio
My third time reading this book. Decided to get the audiobook alongside my own written copy and switched between the two. I can't put into words how powerful this book has been for me. So many emotions it has put me through. It's incredibly dear to me and finishing it has both a fulfillment and a bittersweet wish for it to continue. You will love the wonderful characters and the wonderful arc the story takes. Thank you John Steinbeck for crafting such a wonderful novel.
I loved this book! If I didn't listen to a chapter each day I began to miss it, which speaks of Steinbeck's ability to create an amazing world and relatable characters with his prose. Also, the narration could not be better. Highly recommend.
A hopeless book lover
Such a wonderful story. John Steinbeck was amazing at character development and plot. While this is largely a sad tale it is so richly and beautifully told.
The narrator was great.
So glad I revisited this great tale. I know I got so much more out of it than when I was younger.
There are no words to describe the greatness of this novel. As the novel progressed my love for it grew. The suspense, the storyline, and the lessons/wisdom that this novel contained was perfectly incorporated. This is truly a masterpiece of literature.
or the absolute longest most boring book I have ever read in my entire life. Never ever came together to be anything short of grueling. I do not recommend this book
I first read this over 40 years ago and wondered then why it was generally rated as high as it was, and apparently still is, by readers and critics alike. Steinbeck writes beautifully, especially his nature descriptions and dialogue, but proper motivation for some of his characters' actions often seems lacking. Two of the principal protagonists, Caleb and Aaron, seem to suffer from that here. Can a boy really view himself as fundamentally evil based only on the character of his mother? Can another be so innocent that finding out his mother is a prostitute and never really loved him cause him to largely abandon everything he had ever believed in and worked for? I don't think so, and it seems that Steinbeck often went too far in contriving to make his plot match too closely the Cain and Abel myth.But apparently most others are not bothered by this. It is probably just something lacking in me, because I think Dickens, Fitzgerald, Hemingway, Faulkner, Mailer and Bellow have also enjoyed reputations they do not fully merit, while ones like Thackeray, Somerset Maugham and Graham Greene are often underappreciated.
Used to be an avid reader, but became an avid knitter. Eventually found Audible and can now have the best of both worlds.
This is a great story that pulls you in and makes you feel like you're part of the background of the era. The narrator at first was very dull and monotone and hard for me to take. After a while it either got better or I got used to it.
I'd recommend this to anyone probably 16 or older.
Most memorable moment was when the father spoke at the end. Loved the character Lee., seemed to remind me of Mammy in Gone With The Wind.
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