Read, Run, Ramble's Reviews > The Pearl

The Pearl by John Steinbeck
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's review
Jul 27, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: 2012, historical-fiction
Read from July 22 to 26, 2012

Steinbeck has a knack for writing of laborers' struggles - he does it well and in great form.

This short story is a fable of sort. Kino is a pearl farmer and to begin the story he and his wife, Juana, watch as a scorpion stings their son. In order to get help for their son, they must get money, which is no easy task for this working family. The stuffy doctor simply doesn't have time for those who don't have something big to offer him.

Kino hopes to find a pearl, which he can sell in town. What he finds is the "Pearl of the World". It is very large and Kino immediately starts making plans for the money he'll get with the pearl - education for Coyotito, his son, a rifle for himself, nice clothes for his wife.

Immediately Kino and his family begin to experience very bad luck and all seems to be associated with the coveted pearl. Kino becomes angry, protective and obsessed with the pearl. He's suspicious of neighbors, friends and other acquaintances - sometimes for very good reason.

The story uncovers the inherent greed and evil that is present in most men's hearts when riches are involved and like most fables, this one doesn't end as one might expect or would like.

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