Nilesh Kashyap's Reviews > The Pearl
by John Steinbeck
“In the town they tell the story of the great pearl” how it was found and how it was lost again. They tell of Kino, the fisherman, and of his wife, Juana, and of the baby, Coyotito. And because the story has been told so often, it has taken root in every man’s mind. And, as with all retold tales that are in people’s hearts, there are only good and bad things and black and white things and good and evil things and no in-between anywhere.
“If this story is a parable, perhaps everyone takes his own meaning from it and reads his own life into it. In any case, they say in the town that…”
This small prologue tells very much of all that is in the book. From the very first page, the moment the pearl is found and on every other page one knows that pearl will be lost. But I read with the bleakest of hope that the pearl would not be lost, the pearl that has became Kino’s life and whose music, the music of pearl, played above all. Or did I read just to confirm for myself that pearl was really lost, lost to the world that comprised of pearl dealers (with hope that someone will replace the one, under whom they worked), doctor (who dreamed of going to Paris), Priest (remembering those part of church that were in need of repair) and to the city of concrete.
And in midst of all this we see a stubborn husband’s struggle to save his family from all the evil that came along with the pearl. A calm wife and at the same time a mother, making futile attempt to get rid of pearl as it has laid curse upon her family.
What’s interesting is the vivid description of landscape. You just do not read a story but you live the story. You see and feel everything, even that which is not perceptible to our eyes in day to day life. I remember only one book that had stark description of setting and backdrop even more vibrant ‘The Inheritance of Loss’
There is nothing much to remember from the story, nevertheless a nice story. It just feels that I am yet to read the best of John Steinbeck.