East of Eden Readalong discussion

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East of Eden > Part 3 Discussion / Chapters 23-33 [SPOILERS]

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message 1: by Ian (new)

Ian Anderson (beyondthemargin) | 29 comments Mod
Discussion for chapters 23 through 33 of East of Eden. Spoilers are allowed here so please only read comments if you have read the chapters up to this point.


message 2: by Stephanie (new)

Stephanie Jane | 7 comments WAIT! So, I just realized he’s writing this like it’s about his family! It’s from his perspective and the names of his parents in the book are the real names of John Steinbeck’s parents. So... is this supposed to be based on a true story? I didn’t realize the narrator was the author! Or is this just a fun thing he’s doing?


message 3: by Jonathan (last edited Jun 12, 2018 02:21PM) (new)

Jonathan | 10 comments Stephanie wrote: "WAIT! So, I just realized he’s writing this like it’s about his family! It’s from his perspective and the names of his parents in the book are the real names of John Steinbeck’s parents. So... is t..."

Like you I was interested to see Olive and her husband, Ernest Steinbeck, at the Hamilton's on Thanksgiving. It had already been established that the narrator was the son of Olive Hamilton. I think it must be autobiographical to a certain extent but I wouldn't take it too far—I think Steinbeck may have used his family's history to then weave a story around it.


message 4: by Stephanie (new)

Stephanie Jane | 7 comments Jonathan, I’m sure you’re right. But it’s so interesting that he did it that way!


message 5: by Jonathan (new)

Jonathan | 10 comments I just reached another comedy sequence - this time it's Adam's new Ford T. Remember:
Spark up - gas down.
Switch to Bat.
Crank to compression, thumb down.
Easy over - choke out.
Spin her.
Spark down - gas up.
Switch to Mag.

Easy as that. Jus' call me Joe.


message 6: by Emily (new)

Emily Emm (emmaleighbug) Wow - Lee’s discussion between do thou, thou shalt, thou mayest is one of the most brilliant things I’ve ever read. We need more of this thinking in the world! Think for themselves, be curious, question! Don’t take a word for it, because one word makes all the difference in the world.

Any writing which has influenced the thinking and the lives of innumerable people is important.
Couldn’t have said it better myself.


message 7: by Laura (new)

Laura Anderson (bylsanderson) | 2 comments Emily wrote: "Wow - Lee’s discussion between do thou, thou shalt, thou mayest is one of the most brilliant things I’ve ever read. We need more of this thinking in the world! Think for themselves, be curious, que..."

Same! Gives me chills.


message 8: by Ian (new)

Ian Anderson (beyondthemargin) | 29 comments Mod
Stephanie wrote: "WAIT! So, I just realized he’s writing this like it’s about his family! It’s from his perspective and the names of his parents in the book are the real names of John Steinbeck’s parents. So... is t..."

I remember when I came to this realization as well! I believe he used his family and experiences as inspiration, but a lot of the characters are completely fictional.


message 9: by Ian (new)

Ian Anderson (beyondthemargin) | 29 comments Mod
Jonathan wrote: "Stephanie wrote: "WAIT! So, I just realized he’s writing this like it’s about his family! It’s from his perspective and the names of his parents in the book are the real names of John Steinbeck’s p..."

I think this is correct. He uses his family and experiences as inspiration, but most of this is fictional.


message 10: by Ian (new)

Ian Anderson (beyondthemargin) | 29 comments Mod
Jonathan wrote: "I just reached another comedy sequence - this time it's Adam's new Ford T. Remember:
Spark up - gas down.
Switch to Bat.
Crank to compression, thumb down.
Easy over - choke out.
Spin her.
Spark dow..."


Haha yes! Underrated chapter. I loved how curious the Trask boys were and their interaction with the mechanic. It provided some much needed comic relief to a lot of the dark things that happen in Part 3.


message 11: by Ian (new)

Ian Anderson (beyondthemargin) | 29 comments Mod
Emily wrote: "Wow - Lee’s discussion between do thou, thou shalt, thou mayest is one of the most brilliant things I’ve ever read. We need more of this thinking in the world! Think for themselves, be curious, que..."

Lee is so great. I've actually seen people online get thou mayest tattoos on themselves, that's how meaningful that part is to people.


message 12: by Ian (new)

Ian Anderson (beyondthemargin) | 29 comments Mod
An incredible section of the book. I thought Lee really solidifies himself as one of the best characters in this book. We are forced to say goodbye to a lot of characters (Samuel, Dessie, Tom). I really loved the section where Dessie and Tom were spending time together, I felt a connection with both of their characters. It's interesting how Steinbeck said Liza was looking older than Samuel a long time ago but now he says she seems to be growing younger every day, insinuating she is taking all the losses of her children and husband really well. Steinbeck might be exaggerating a little bit here. Finally, the story turns its focus to the two Trask boys and their friend Abra--which sort of brings a sense of innocence to the story just as it's at its darkest.


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