East of Eden

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Penguin, 2002 - Fiction - 601 pages
130 Reviews
In his journal, John Steinbeck called East of Eden "the first book," and indeed it has the primordial power and simplicity of myth. Set in the rich farmland of Californiars"s Salinas Valley, this sprawling and often brutal novel follows the intertwined destinies of two families-the Trasks and the Hamiltons-whose generations helplessly reenact the fall of Adam and Eve and the poisonous rivalry of Cain and Abel.Adam Trask came to California from the East to farm and raise his family on the new, rich land. But the birth of his twins, Cal and Aron, brings his wife to the brink of madness, and Adam is left alone to raise his boys to manhood. One boy thrives, nurtured by the love of all those around him; the other grows up in loneliness, enveloped by a mysterious darkness. First published in 1952, East of Eden is the work in which Steinbeck created his most mesmerizing characters and explored his most enduring themes: the mystery of identity, the inexplicability of love, and the murderous consequences of lovers"s absence. A masterpiece of Steinbeckrs"s later years, East of Eden is a powerful and vastly ambitious novel that is at once a family saga and a modern retelling of the Book of Genesis.

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Now with these characters, the plot wasn't too great. - LibraryThing
It was not a page turner for me. - LibraryThing
Ending reminded me of "Citizen Cane". - LibraryThing
This is not a plot driven story. - LibraryThing

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User Review  - EllenReads - LibraryThing

What I liked: 1) I loved the epic sweep of the book. When I finished I felt I had been immersed in so many situations, characters, and locations. 2) I enjoyed the complexity of the characters (well ... Read full review

Review: East of Eden

User Review  - Kestutis Satkauskas - Goodreads

One bloody good book, shall I say. Unbelievable. It shakes your world. It cuts across the valley of your soul, it drenches your mind and leaves you in awe - those deep, very deep explorations of ... Read full review

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About the author (2002)

No writer is more quintessentially American than John Steinbeck. Born in 1902 in Salinas, California, Steinbeck attended Stanford University before working at a series of mostly blue-collar jobs and embarking on his literary career. Profoundly committed to social progress, he used his writing to raise issues of labor exploitation and the plight of the common man, penning some of the greatest American novels of the twentieth century and winning such prestigious awards as the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award. He received the Nobel Prize in 1962, "for his realistic and imaginative writings, combining as they do sympathetic humour and keen social perception." Today, more than thirty years after his death, he remains one of America's greatest writers and cultural figures.

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