131 & 132: The Pearl and The Red Pony

I don’t read a lot of Steinbeck. These two – The Pearl and The Red Pony – are, I think, definitely better than Of Mice and Men. The Pearl is about greed, and the way the things which inspire greed inspire evil. It’s a tightly written and rather harrowing book, and you can forgive it any improbabilities which arise from making it an allegorical or parabolic whole. The Red Pony, on the other hand, is viscerally gut-wrenching, about the loss of a childish faith in the rightness, or rightability, of the world.

Steinbeck’s is not a world where things go right for people, basically.


The Pearl
Author John Steinbeck
Published 1947
Pages 89
Best character Juana.

The Red Pony
Author John Steinbeck
Published 1938
Pages 92
Best character Billy Buck. “He had no right to be fallible, and he knew it.”

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