Inspired by a friend on his way to Steinbeck country, I picked up this novel / novella. (What is a novella? Does anyone care about the distinction? Is there a real distinction?) I’ve read a lot of Steinbeck over a lot of years, so much so that I ought to keep a list. As I got into these pages, they seemed new to me in terms of character, but the best of what I admire about Steinbeck. He can evoke a person, a place, a time period as well as anyone I’ve read. The prose here is pitch-perfect. These people come to life, Doc and Mack in particular.

Sweet Thursday will be next.

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