The Pearl by John Steinbeck: Book Review

Title: The Pearl 
Author: John Steinbeck 
Pages: 87
Published: 1947
Genre: Mexican Folk Story 
When the news of Kino's great find- the "Pearl of the World" - spreads through his small town, no one suspects its power to deceive, to corrupt, or to destroy.

Like his father and his grandfather, Kino barely makes a living as a pearl diver. Gathering small pearls from the gulf beds provides Kino, Juana, and their infant son with a meager subsistence.

One day, Kino emerges from the sea with a pearl "perfect as the moon." The pearl brings hope, the promise of comfort, and security.

Based on a Mexican folk tale, this classic explores the secrets of man's nature, the darkest depths of evil, and the possibilities of love. 

John Steinbeck's novel The Pearl focuses on the interpretation of an ancient Mexican folktale which brings light to the topic of the misconception of fortune. In the short story Kino, a poor pearl diver who lives with his wife and child, finds a pearl no like other. His life is immediately and ultimately changed. He becomes a rich man, whose intentions serve only to provide for his family. That soon changes when Kino learns the true value of his pearl. Corruption and greed get the best of him, and he's forced to choose between his family and the thing that's caused nothing but trouble. In this exciting and moral-filled story, we're lured into a world where greed is the main causality. 

This book is directed mainly towards an older audience. And by older I mean 10-12 years olds. Although the book may look small in size, the story and words hold a greater substance. The story itself is flawless in its execution but the pace, however, starts off to be a little slow. When you're in the first chapter of the book, you might find yourself falling asleep. But Steinbeck chose to draw more attention later in the book, when the real action and climax of the story start to take off. I would expect nothing less from Steinbeck who has written over twenty books! 

We are faced with the great moral of the story which is primarily the danger of greed. This is shown in the way that the pearl transforms Kino throughout the novel as he seeks to improve his own life through selling the pearl. As said in the book, "The news came to the doctor [...]. And the doctor's eyes rolled up a little in their fat hammocks and he though of Paris."  Strong and sophisticated character development is present in this book. Not only do we see Kino developing, but his wife Juana as well. She starts to realize the horrendous change in her husband's ways. I particularly enjoyed his writing style as it wasn't too complex, and it was very enjoyable! 

Overall a mysteriously lore that explores the good and evil in human nature with an astounding ending!

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