The Pearl

I think this book is about a pearl. Or robots. But not both.

It’s another endeavor to break out of the sci-fi/horror/fantasy rut that my reading has fallen into. The Pearl strikes me as one of those books that everyone was forced to read in high school, except that I wasn’t. I think we read The Grapes of Wrath instead, because we were all Oakies. I’ve heard good things about it in the past, though, and there seem to be plenty of online study guides/references for it. I always enjoy consulting that kind of stuff when I’m done with a book just to see what I may have missed.

From Amazon:

Kino, a poor Mexican pearl fisher, finds a valuable pearl. Yet instead of bringing blessings, the pearl acts as a harbinger of misfortune to Kino and his wife, Juana. Ultimately, it is returned from whence it came. Steinbeck’s parable, originally published in 1947, is a well-written retelling of an old Mexican folktale.

Hrm. Including Tuck Everlasting, this makes two books in a row about how something that seems at first to be a great boon can turn out to be a terrible curse.

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One thought on “The Pearl

  1. What I most remember about the book as a kid is thinking how neat it would be to go pearl diving. Although, as with many Steinbeck novels, no one seems to get ahead. As in Of Mice and Men, George and Lenny never get their farm, and the Old Man catches a big ass fish and the sharks eat it (Hemmingway, but you get the point). I think I liked Steinbeck’s novel The Wayward Bus best. At least the bus driver got had extramarital sex with a young woman in a barn and no one later killed him.
    I have a novel idea that would have enabled the diver to keep his fortune and his child alive at the same time. Don’t tell anyone you found a enormous black pearl. Hide it, then wait for Antiques Roadshow to come to your town. I’m sure someone will then want to buy it at auction for an outlandish price.

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