Down to a Soundless Sea
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Down to a Soundless Sea

3.94 of 5 stars 3.94  ·  rating details  ·  144 ratings  ·  20 reviews
Here is an unprecedented fiction debut that is cause for celebration. Growing up in a family that valued the art of storytelling and the power of oral history, Thomas Steinbeck now follows in his father’s footsteps with a brilliant story collection. Down to a Soundless Sea resonates with the rich history and culture of California, recalling vivid details of life in Montere...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published October 1st 2002 by Ballantine Books
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This book, which is a collection of short stories that the author has collected or researched over the years, is a promising start. It's hard not to look at Thomas Steinbeck's writing and not think about his illustrious father, John, but Thomas does seem to have a knack for writing too, however rough around the edges it is. There are seven stories in here set between the 1850's and 1930's in the Salinas and Monterey area. My two favorite stories in here are "An Unbecoming Grace," which follows t...more
An engaging collection of tales set mostly in the Big Sur of long ago (also in Pacfic Grove, Salinas, et al.). Thomas Steinbeck is an excellent prose writer and teller of tales. Anyone familiar with the area and interested in the history should find compelling reading here.
Iris recommended this book for our meeting in March. Thanks.
An incredible collection of short stories by a very talented writer. If you love the elder Steinbeck, you will truly love his son's well-crafted prose which includes memorable characters and paints a beautiful picture of life on the central coast.
Great stories, especially Blond Luck and the one about the doctor. You feel that you are part of the story. Excellent pictures painted. Hope he keeps on writing!
Mar 03, 2014 Jo rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2014
Well written short stories. I enjoyed this book but did have a hard time not recalling my absolute love for his father's work. He passed the test by me.
Very well written and interesting stories. Echoes of his father. I especially recommend for people who live in the Big Sur/Monterey Bay area, for a bit of local history.
I met Thom through a mutual friend (who is now passed). This was his first book and first foray into fiction writing - and it is excellent. It is a collection of stories that were sparked from stories that his father (John) used to tell them sitting around the dinner table. Thom says that is how they grew up - telling stories at the dinner table. I highly recommend it.
I love short stories, especially when I don't have a lot of concentrated reading time. All of these center around the Monterey Peninsula in California at the turn of the century. Anyone who has visited there should find these interesting. They are intentionally written by the author to give the feel of the oral tradition of storytelling.
Couldn't believe that a son of Steinbeck would actually attempt to write-so had to read it.
T.S. writes a few short stories handed down from Monterrey Bay old-timers. There are a few good yarns but I think I appreciated the content more than I did the actual writing. Can't hold a handle to Dad but gotta give him props for trying.
Cathy M.
Absolutely loved this book of short stories. I could read it again & highly recommend it!
Written by John Steinbeck's son, this book was a dead-ringer for the elder Steinbeck's work in tone, setting, style and characters. I enjoyed the tales but found the son's lack on independence a little disturbing.
Daniel Brewster
Not every story appealed to me, but the prose was powerfully crafted. Most of the time it felt like being in a pleasant dream. I always felt that I was in safe hands, prose-wise, if not plot-wise.
Mr. Steinbeck writes very well. He keeps your interest throughout the story.
I like reading these short stories, about different people.
I would read more of his books.
Strong, likable characters. Few surprises in the stories. Sometimes the familiarity was comforting. Sometimes it made the story drag.
Great collection of short stories -- especially for those of you who love the Monterey / Big Sur area!
Feb 12, 2013 Karen added it
Terrific collection of historical short stories set in Monteray Bay area.
This is a wonderful collection of short stories by his son.
Disappointed in most of the stories. Some went no where.
Graeme marked it as to-read
Jul 18, 2014
Sheila MacKenzie
Sheila MacKenzie marked it as to-read
Jun 19, 2014
Sia Stewart
Sia Stewart marked it as to-read
Jun 12, 2014
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