- Paperback: 176 pages
- Publisher: Penguin Classics; New Ed edition (7 Sept. 2000)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0141185082
- ISBN-13: 978-0141185088
- Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 0.7 x 19.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (142 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 17,753 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Cannery Row (Penguin Modern Classics) Paperback – 7 Sep 2000
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More About the Author
Popular success and financial security came only with Tortilla Flat (1935), stories about Monterey's paisanos. A ceaseless experimenter throughout his career, Steinbeck changed courses regularly. Three powerful novels of the late 1930s focused on the California labouring class: In Dubious Battle (1936), Of Mice and Men (1937), and the book considered by many his finest, The Grapes of Wrath (1939).
Being partly based on his own experiences as a travelling worker, Steinbeck originally wanted Of Mice and Men to be titled 'Something That Happened'. The book explores themes of powerlessness, loneliness and empathy and received the greatest positive critical response of any of his works up to that point. It has achieved success as a novel, a Broadway play and three acclaimed films.
Steinbeck's compassionate depiction of the poor in The Grapes of Wrath helped the book become an immediate publishing phenomenon, discussed on a national scale and becoming an instant bestseller. The book was described by the Nobel Prize committee as a "great work" and stated that it was one of the main reasons for granting Steinbeck the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1962.
Early in the 1940s, Steinbeck became a filmmaker with The Forgotten Village (1941) and a serious student of marine biology with Sea of Cortez (1941). He devoted his services to the war, writing Bombs Away (1942) and the controversial play-novelette The Moon is Down (1942). Cannery Row (1945), The Wayward Bus (1948), another experimental drama, Burning Bright (1950), and The Log from the Sea of Cortez (1951) preceded publication of the monumental East of Eden (1952)East of Eden (1952), an ambitious saga of the Salinas Valley and his own family's history.
The last decades of his life were spent in New York City and Sag Harbor with his third wife, with whom he traveled widely. Later books include: Sweet Thursday (1954)The Short Reign of Pippin IV: A Fabrication (1957), Once There was a War (1958), The Winter of Our Discontent (1961), Travels with Charley in Search of America (1962), America and Americans (1966) and the posthumously published Journal of a Novel: The East of Eden Letters (1969),Viva Zapata! (1975,The Acts of King Arthur and His Noble Knights (1976), and Working Days: The Journals of The Grapes of Wrath (1989).
He died in 1968, having won a Nobel Prize in 1962.
Winner of the 2012 Fifty Books/Fifty Covers show, organized by Design Observer in association with AIGA and Designers & Books Winner of the 2014 Type Directors Club Communication Design Award Praise for Penguin Drop Caps: "[Penguin Drop Caps] convey a sense of nostalgia for the tactility and aesthetic power of a physical book and for a centuries-old tradition of beautiful lettering." "Fast Company" Vibrant, minimalist new typographic covers . Bonus points for the heartening gender balance of the initial selections. Maria Popova, "Brain Pickings" "The Penguin Drop Caps series is a great example of the power of design. Why buy these particular classics when there are less expensive, even free editions of "Great Expectations"? Because they re beautiful objects. Paul Buckley and Jessica Hische s fresh approach to the literary classics reduces the design down to typography and color. Each cover is foil-stamped with a cleverly illustrated letterform that reveals an element of the story. Jane Austen s A ("Pride and Prejudice") is formed by opulent peacock feathers and Charlotte Bronte s B ("Jane Eyre") is surrounded by flames. The complete set forms a rainbow spectrum prettier than anything else on your bookshelf." Rex Bonomelli, "The New York Times" "Drool-inducing." "Flavorwire" "Classic reads in stunning covers your book club will be dying." "Redbook""
Packed with invention and joie de vivre CANNERY ROW is Steinbeck's high-spirited tribute to his native California. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
The characters in Cannery Row are, without exception, societies outcasts: Drunkards, thieves, prostitutes, gamblers and down-on-their-luck businessmen. From reading this you would be forgiven for thinking this story would be bleak or perhaps unpleasant. Nothing could be further from the truth.
It's refreshing to read about characters who genuinely love life. There isn't a whole lot of brooding or introverted thoughts just a small group with tenuous links in common getting on with their lives and co-existing. There is a subtle thread of mutal love and friendship in among the grime of their existence.
I found the book uplifting and fun to read. There is tragedy and sadness but also great and simple joys and an honest way of living which has perhaps been lost these days. I don't envy any of their hard lives but in the midst of their poverty, crime and immoral behaviour alot of joy and decency can be found.
On top of all this I love the front cover of this addition. A very powerful book but also great fun.
Cannery Row centres on life upon a small strip of largely dilapidated land situated next to a sardine cannery in Monterey Bay. It's the 1930s, the time of the Great Depression, and the story follows the daily interactions between the mainly down-trodden residents. These residents (all of whom symbolically represent various class structures in society) are primarily comprised of: Lee Chong, the Chinese grocer, Mac and 'the boys' who reside in a `refurbished' storage hut loving christened the Palace Flop-house, Doc who runs the marine laboratory, and Dora, the owner of the Bear Flag restaurant, which in actuality is a house of ill-repute.
Given Mr. Steinbeck's incredible talent for creating remarkable characters, and settings (something which I've discovered in ALL of the his books that I've read), I'm not surprised I'm so enamoured with Cannery Row, there's just something so magical about each and every one of them. This is the first novel I've finished where the characters, and the place, have carried on living in my head; out of nowhere I suddenly begin wondering how Doc's getting on in his laboratory, or whether Mac and the boys have managed to get up on their luck, if Mr. Chong is still in his sentinel position in his shop, behind the cigar counter, or if Dora's place is busy or not.
I have to say though, that I found no real story behind Cannery Row. As I found with other Steinbeck novels, the onus of the story is all about the characters and how they interact with one another, rather than any hugely engaging plot.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I have to say that the thing I loved most about this book was the vocabulary. I wasn't aware that I had been missing beautiful colourful descriptions using a wide range of... Read morePublished 22 days ago by Debra F
I first read this book as a teenager back in the 60's and it had a big impact then. Re-read it now (2015) and everything good I remember was confirmed. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Mr. David Mason
What a wonderfully descriptive cornucopia of wisdom, wit and wonder. Steinbeck has penned an absolute stunner in this little gem of a book. Read morePublished 2 months ago by T. J. Mccarthy
Disappointing for Steinbeck, does not compare to East of Eden or the amazing Grapes of wrath.Published 3 months ago by Guildenboy