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Readalong: East of Eden > East of Eden Week 4: chapters 24/25-32

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Jenny (Reading Envy) (readingenvy) | 907 comments Mod
The good news is, if you read to 25 last time, this week will feel short! Discussion of week 4 goes here.


message 2: by Mary (new)

Mary Oh Samuel, rest in peace, I'm going to miss you. I wish this book was centered around you rather than Adam, that idiot.

I've not read other Steinbeck novels so I don't know if it's just this book but the way he writes women is so two dimensional. There is just no depth to any of them, except possibly Olive, who I think it was mentioned is his mother and Dessie (must have been his favorite aunt). I think this is why I don't see Cathy/Kate as threatening, she feels more like a cardboard cutout of a villain then a real threat and there is the issue that all her threats always seem to come back around to sex.

Then the most annoying part of this section, Adam who finally gets over Cathy/Kate, not when she abandons her newborn twins, not when she shoots Adam with the intention to kill him, not when she become the madam of a whorehouse that seems to specialize in deviant behavior and lastly not when she plans to use photos to extort and ruin the lives of as many men as possible. Nope none of that does it, it's when she gets old looking - yep crepey neck, spotted hands, belly and cankles. All of a sudden the love is gone- nice.

I'm finding the best parts of Steinbeck's writing are those small transitions sections/paragraphs where he writes about the changing of the seasons and/or sets the scene for the next section.


message 3: by Elizabeth☮ (new)

Elizabeth☮  | 234 comments I think the reason Adam finally gets over his love for Cathy/Kate is because he realizes she no longer has a hold on him. He can turn from her charms and walk away and that empowers him. But, it did take quite a bit to make him come to that realization.


message 4: by Jeff (new)

Jeff (jeff_koeppen) | 168 comments There is so much good stuff in this section: Adam visits and eventually gets over Kate, Kate reveals her diabolical "envelope" plan, Abra Bacon pops in for a visit, we get to know the twins, and Adam stops in for a visit at the author's house to pay respects to Samuel.

I think the most interesting part was the contrasting of the personalities of the twins using the ant hill example. Cal is taking after Charles and Aron after Adam.

I thought the funniest part of this section was the episode with Adam, Lee, and Joe (Roy) the condescending mechanic. When I read the part about Joe trying to show Adam how to operate his new auto it brought to mind Jimmy Fallon's Nick Burns - Your Company's Computer Guy character from SNL.

It felt satisfying to see Adam (Mr. Mouse) stand up to Kate, his indifference to her inheritance from Charles seemed to bother her and filled her with anger. Her insults and comments about the twins' paternity rolled right off his back. Adam is finally out of the zombie-like state he was in for so long.


message 5: by Amy (new)

Amy | 22 comments I really appreciate how these characters develop with age and that the world around them has not stood still. I just wonder if the Tom storyline is a shadow of what would have happened to Adam if Samuel hadn't intervened. Tom needed Samuel and his heartbreak is so sad.


message 6: by Jeff (new)

Jeff (jeff_koeppen) | 168 comments Elizabeth☮ wrote: "I think the reason Adam finally gets over his love for Cathy/Kate is because he realizes she no longer has a hold on him. He can turn from her charms and walk away and that empowers him. But, it di..." I agree. And she was rather upset about that development.


message 7: by Elizabeth☮ (new)

Elizabeth☮  | 234 comments And I felt so proud of him when he was able to do so. But I also felt Cathy wasn't done with him yet.


Jenny (Reading Envy) (readingenvy) | 907 comments Mod
Elizabeth☮ wrote: "And I felt so proud of him when he was able to do so. But I also felt Cathy wasn't done with him yet."
The interaction regarding Charles' inheritance was interesting. Adam certainly gained a few insights.


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