The Pearl

The Pearl

eBook - 1992
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For the diver Kino, finding a magnificent pearl means the promise of better life for his impoverished family. His dream blinds him to the greed and suspicions the pearl arouses in him and his neighbors, and even his loving wife cannot temper his obsession or stem the events leading to tragedy. Kino and his wife illustrate the fall from innocence of people who believe that wealth erases all problems
Publisher: New York : Penguin Books, 1992
ISBN: 9781429590419
1429590416
9781429590440
1429590440
Branch Call Number: EBOOK OVERDRIVE
Characteristics: 1 online resource
Additional Contributors: OverDrive, Inc
Alternative Title: Pearl of the world

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leejuliet
Aug 04, 2020

The Pearl is an allegorical story written by John Steinbeck to reveal the evils of greed and haste. Kino was an ordinary man who lived by simple joy among his wife and his baby son. He enjoyed the accompaniment of nature along with the breeze and music it produced. One day, his son Coyotito was stung by a scorpion, and left the family in debt from medical bills they could not defay. The doctor constantly refused the misshapen rocks and gems Kino offered. As Kino swam and dived under deep shores to relieve himself, he discovered a gigantic pearl in the tides. He declared himself the most rich man in the world, and contemplated all that he could provide his family with the possession of the mineral. This discovery led to numerous robbery attempts as well as the development of Kino’s selfishness and aggression. Kino’s wife, Juana, persistently begged Kino to rid the pearl for their safety, but the determined and frustrated man declined. While escaping more criminals and hunters, the two parents had to suffer losses because of the greed people in the town had for the pearl. Thus, Kino learned about the dangers of being selfish and wanting.
This novel portrayed a significant moral that teaches readers to avoid being self-centered and focus on the present rather than counting the chickens before the eggs. Steinbeck improvised an amazing story that was both enticing and meaningful. The story had multiple vicious scenes, so I would recommend readers ages 13 and up to read it. This masterpiece deserves 5 stars for the plot itself and the moral we learn as we reach the end.

t
TheBorgQueen
Jul 24, 2020

The Pearl, by John Steinbeck, is a story about Kino, his wife Juana and his young son Coyotito. After Kino’s son gets a serious scorpion bite, the couple rush to the town doctor, hoping to get treatment. However, they are turned away, since they were poor and could not pay the price. In order to try and get enough money to pay for the treatment of their son, Kino and Juana rush out to sea to find pearls. While diving, Kino finds an incredible large pearl, and the neighborhood celebrates Kino and his family. The doctor treats Coyotito after hearing about the pearl, so Kino tries to go into town to sell the pearl to pay back the doctor. Unfortunately, the buyers refused to pay the fair price for the pearl, so Kino planned to go to the Capital. Some events ensue, causing the family to be on the run, with Kino still keeping the pearl, despite those around him saying that it is a bad omen.

This story is a classic story of a poor man turning rich and allowing greed to consume him. Although I do agree that greed is not a good thing and wealth is not the most important, I do not completely agree with the author’s portrayal of this message. Although Kino became greedy with the pearl, I do not think it is a sin to want a better life for you and your family. Kino just wanted to give his son a better life than what he was able to provide. Who could blame him for wanting to keep the pearl, which could launch him and his family out of poverty? The message about not allowing greed to consume you is a good one, however I do not think that making Kino seem like an evil character helps prove that point.

t
TEENREVIEWBOARD
Jul 02, 2020

The Pearl by Nobel Prize-winning author John Steinbeck begins with one of the most picturesque, idyllic scenes in literature: a young pearl diver Kino awaking at dawn, gazing lovingly at his wife Juana and their baby son Coyotito, listening to the sounds of the sea. Of course, then, with the entrance of a great pearl, things start spiraling downward. About halfway through the novella, it is already clear that Kino has lost more than what he can regain with the pearl. Yet what is it inside humans, whose greed Kino represents, that spurs them to keep going, in pursuit of something luring and foreign that has cost them so much already? The novella teaches that the ability to be content, the ability to restrain oneself in the possibility of more wealth, is incredibly difficult, perhaps impossible, to gain. I couldn’t help feeling personally afraid for Kino and his family, as he clung to the dreams that the pearl reflected for him, trying to convince himself that the pearl could help him gain back happiness. Simple yet powerfully written, The Pearl is a novella deserving of all its accolades, sharply insightful and wise especially in these times of increased wealth and greed. 5 stars out of 5 -@StarRead of the Teen Review Board at the Hamilton Public Library

w
wyenotgo
Jun 23, 2020

With apologies to all those eminent commentators (whose credentials in the judgment of literary merit greatly exceed my own) I beg to differ: Not on the merit of Steinbeck’s prose but on the validity of his parable. As with many folk tales or fables, this one is an over-simplification, focused only on its chosen message: the corrupting influence of wealth; that acquiring wealth will destroy a man. It’s a false concept. The prospect of wealth causes Kino only to dream of a better life for his infant son and he goes to great lengths in attempting to make that dream a reality. That desire does not corrupt Kino. He does NOT become an evil person!
The real story here is the corruption that already surrounds Kino and his little family and that corruption does not derive from the pearl; it was there to begin with and remains unchanged. The depth of the doctor’s corruption is truly monumental and disgusting. The fake pearl buyers are hardly any better. And of course wherever there’s the prospect of wealth, there are thieves.
So the tale becomes depressingly predictable. Kino and his family were, from the beginning, victims of a corrupt society and remain so. End of story. The pearl changes nothing.
Steinbeck, given his legendary skill, saves this fable from being a boring, formulaic read. He brilliantly captures the atmosphere of the pearl-fishers’ poverty-stricken little community. His characters resonate with humanity, one can feel them sweat and breathe in the tropical air. Only in his depiction of the doctor does Steinbeck overdo it, but that is forgivable; the story needs a true villain, so why not pull out all the stops!

1
1aa
Oct 28, 2019

A novella that has many aspects of the story undeveloped (like, where is the law? where and when did this occur?); the basic plot is rather stereotypical: a poor person suddenly gets rich (or in this case gets something of great economic value), and is beset by deceivers, thieves and thugs, the most heinous of which are the wealthy, with the upshot that wealth isn't all its cracked up to be, and it might be better to remain poor.

m
MKBrosnihan
Oct 26, 2019

Very good. Very sad but then show me a Steinbeck book that is happy. He writes about life not sunshine, lollipops and rainbows. Life isn't happy and that what he writes about. very good!

s
Suki_Skywalker
Jun 04, 2019

This book is LITERATURE, but it has quite a sad ending........
It does show what the thought of possible wealth can do to someone.
l do recommend it to people with a love of rich writing $.$
personally, l didn't really enjoy it, but it is something lots of other people would like ^-^

v
violet_dog_12420
Apr 22, 2019

has a really sad ending.

b
Bookworm1562
Apr 14, 2019

I marvel at Steinbeck's genius. Sure there are possible philosophical themes. But you can just enjoy his writing.

a
Andrew Kyle Bacon
Nov 01, 2017

The writing is incredibly lucid and potent, which alone makes this novella worth reading. The film lacks in depth in places but tries to feign depth with its subject matter. The final chapters especially end up feeling a bit silly for some reason, probably because Steinbeck tries so hard to be poignant with the narrative. I enjoyed reading the book, and I understand why it is a required reading in many high schools, but even Steinbeck's beautiful use of language cannot save this narrative from trying just a bit too hard.

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violet_dog_12420
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yellow_whale_97
Jun 03, 2015

My son shall go to school

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