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Thread: John Steinbeck recommenndations

  1. #1
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    Default John Steinbeck recommenndations

    So, watching the relaunch of the Western Flyer a few weeks ago I realised that I had never read a Steinbeck book.
    I'm plowing through "Grapes of Wrath" right now.


    By coincidence, we are visiting Monterey in a month or so. Do you know which of his books have a connection to there? Recommendations please.
    Has anyone read "The log of the sea of Cortez" or "Travels with Charley"? (I prefer non fiction, generally.)

  2. #2
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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    Travels with Charlie.
    basil

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    Cannery Row, Of Mice and Men

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    Quote Originally Posted by Hwyl View Post


    By coincidence, we are visiting Monterey in a month or so. Do you know which of his books have a connection to there?
    Tortilla Flat

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    All worthwhile. All good.
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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    Sweet Thursday. - fits with Cannery Row and Tortilla Flat.

    Travels with Charlie is good.
    I'd much rather lay in my bunk all freakin day lookin at Youtube videos .

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    Log from the Sea of Cortez.
    What's not on a boat costs nothing, weighs nothing, and can't break

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    East of Eden is also very good.

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    The Red Pony, all four stories

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    cannery row is his most entertaining work
    and fits in with your visit to monterey
    Simpler is better, except when complicated looks really cool.

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    At the end of the sixties Cannery Row was abandoned and derelict. Anyone could walk in and out of the old buildings, look up and see daylight through the roof.
    There was a group of young boatbuilders renting and living in one of the larger canneries doing boat repair during the day and partying during the nights, LSD and pot was prevalent...
    It was an amazing and creative time. The (abandoned) Canneries had gravity powered conveyor systems with large baskets on rails to move the product throughout the buildings, some even going across the street on covered overhead passages. It was a fairly simple matter to turn these into a primitive roller coaster and climb on for a ride, what uninhibited fun that was.
    If you visit the aquarium you can still see remnants of the mini rail conveyor system...
    And while you are in the aquarium (which is an old cannery) try and imagine no one being around or taking any interest at all in that whole part of town.
    I have a friend that carried away a giant roll-top desk from the office of one of those canneries.
    (Sausalito was the much same way, derelict, with a community of enterprising young boat builders living in abandoned warehouses and elaborate houseboats, it is all "uptown" now, having zero interest to me. But today if you go to either place use your imagination to look beyond the florescent lights, and $15 cups of coffee. There was no electricity or facilities, excepting a row of one room single wall "houses" with a few surviving immigrant fishermen in them. Old boas, nets and worn out winches, cables and fishing gear piled up all along the waterfront

    Edit: This is my backyard
    If you are in the neighborhood of Monterey, head north on hwy 1 a couple miles to Moss landing and have dinner (or lunch) at Phil's Fish Market (find it) 'Tis the best local seafood around, the fish are sustainable and fresh from the boat.
    Which, "Phil" long ago was busted for pot and served his time. When he got out of prison he started that restaurant on a shoestring and make a great success of it, in spite of Moss Landing itself being in a derelict state. Bill Clinton pardoned him as he had become an asset to the community. Bill Clinton has preciously made Monterey Bay a marine sanctuary which is a huge success with the results being a home base for the very successful NOAA, MBARA and Moss landing Marine institute. The retirement of Fort Ord and it's conversion to a state college was also part of this deal.
    The Monterey canyon itself heads straight out from Moss landing and is over 2 miles deep in places: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monterey_Canyon
    You can also rent a kayak there and paddle into the Elkhorn Slough estuary, a beautiful place.
    To think the federal government had designs on the "canyon" and the estuary to convert to submarine pens is bizarre today.
    Thank god for San Andreas fault, I've seen the published "plan" for these "sub pens" and it is not pretty.
    Last edited by Canoeyawl; 09-26-2022 at 02:58 PM.

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    A lot of research into “Travels With Charley” indicate that there’s a lot of fiction involved.

    “Grapes. . .” is pure masterpiece.
    ITS CHAOS, BE KIND

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    Of Mice and Men is also a masterpiece

    As for Travels with Charley: Steinbeck was a novelist and did not let the facts get in the way of his story telling
    What's not on a boat costs nothing, weighs nothing, and can't break

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Gray View Post
    Cannery Row, Of Mice and Men
    Quote Originally Posted by P.I. Stazzer-Newt View Post
    Sweet Thursday. - fits with Cannery Row and Tortilla Flat.

    Travels with Charlie is good.
    The Moon Is Down
    "Where you live in the world should not determine whether you live in the world." - Bono

    "Live in such a way that you would not be ashamed to sell your parrot to the town gossip." - Will Rogers

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    In Dubious Battle

    I have read almost everything he wrote. The only books I could not get through were his earliest novels Cup of Gold and To a God Unknown
    What's not on a boat costs nothing, weighs nothing, and can't break

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    I read Travels with Charlie last summer on my mom’s recommendation. I very much enjoyed it, truth or fiction it’s a nice read.
    Skip

    ---This post is delivered with righteous passion and with a solemn southern directness --
    ...........fighting against the deliberate polarization of politics...

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    Thanks everyone. Especially Jake. I have more than enough info now.

    Edit, now open again.
    Last edited by Hwyl; 09-27-2022 at 05:44 PM.

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    Quote Originally Posted by Canoeyawl View Post
    hborhood of Monterey, head north on hwy 1 a couple miles to Moss landing and have dinner (or lunch) at Phil's Fish Market (find it) 'Tis the best local seafood around, the fish are sustainable and fresh from the boat.
    I just checked Phi's website, they are closed while they relocate. I hope they reopen nearby before December.

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    Simpler is better, except when complicated looks really cool.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    And then the murders began....
    What's not on a boat costs nothing, weighs nothing, and can't break

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    Quote Originally Posted by Hwyl View Post
    I just checked Phi's website, they are closed while they relocate. I hope they reopen nearby before December.
    I had no eye dear, we ate dinner there a couple of weeks ago, not a clue!

    But there is this: my favorite lunch place when I am anywhere near Moss Landing
    http://philssnackshack.com/



    I often get a call to rescue some old diesel engine in the harbor and never turn down a chance for lunch... I always schedule the service call to coincide with the lunch hour, yum!

  22. #22
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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    No matter how much I love the book, I refuse to order a beer milkshake (or try one).
    "Where you live in the world should not determine whether you live in the world." - Bono

    "Live in such a way that you would not be ashamed to sell your parrot to the town gossip." - Will Rogers

    "Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others." - Groucho Marx

  23. #23
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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    start with this

    double chocolate coffee oatmeal stout

    Simpler is better, except when complicated looks really cool.

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    All of the above are fine. just finished Once There Was a War
    Once There Was a War - Wikipedia

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    ^ Paul, that made my mouth water!
    "Where you live in the world should not determine whether you live in the world." - Bono

    "Live in such a way that you would not be ashamed to sell your parrot to the town gossip." - Will Rogers

    "Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others." - Groucho Marx

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    The Log of the Sea of Cortez.

    It details the trip made by Steinbeck and Ed Ricketts, his marine biologist friend, to the Sea of Cortez aboard WESTERN FLYER.

    https://journal.naturalhistoryinstit...sea-of-cortez/

    Which trip provided the sources for Ricketts' subsequent Between Pacific Tides, still an authoritative reference on Pacific Coast invertebrate sea life.

    https://www.nature.com/articles/516326a

    And, read Cannery Row, but not before watching the 1992 film starring Debra Winger and Nick Nolte.

    It's filmed almost entirely on a sound stage and is (I think) most excellent.

    https://youtu.be/s9rHCftqjDo

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  27. #27
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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    watch the movie before reading the book

    thats just crazy talk
    Simpler is better, except when complicated looks really cool.

  28. #28
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    Default John Steinbeck recommenndations

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Pless View Post
    watch the movie before reading the book

    thats just crazy talk

    No. If you read the book and then watch the movie, you'll just be pi$$ed off by how poorly the movie compares with the book.

    But if you see the movie first and then read the book, you'll enjoy the movie, and then be pleased as punch when you discover just how much better the book is than the movie.
    Last edited by Nicholas Carey; 09-28-2022 at 01:14 AM.
    You would not enjoy Nietzsche, sir. He is fundamentally unsound. P.G. Wodehouse (Carry On, Jeeves)

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    Quote Originally Posted by CWSmith View Post
    The Moon Is Down
    I think he was out of his depth with that one. Better his US based books.

  30. #30
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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    Only one mention of East of Eden? I consider it his best, I have it on board. I also have Log from the Sea of Cortez, which is also excellent except for the few chapters written by his friend. You will know them when you hit them.

    I really liked the Winter of our Discontent, but I think it resonated with me personally more than it would with everybody.

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    Quote Originally Posted by Nicholas Carey View Post
    And, read Cannery Row, but not before watching the 1992 film starring Debra Winger and Nick Nolte.
    I don't remember if I saw that, but I seem to remember it was based more, or at least partially, on Sweet Thursday.
    "Where you live in the world should not determine whether you live in the world." - Bono

    "Live in such a way that you would not be ashamed to sell your parrot to the town gossip." - Will Rogers

    "Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others." - Groucho Marx

  32. #32
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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Pless View Post

    Been a bit gentrified since then...

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    Once upon a time, there was a place called California.

    Steinbeck was great but he held back to get published. See Robinson Jeffers.

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    Quote Originally Posted by Dan McCosh View Post
    Been a bit gentrified since then...
    But, there was a time not so long after that was written when the fish went away and it all became derelict. And it was perfect!

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    Default Re: John Steinbeck recommenndations

    Speaking of good eats in the area, is the Giant Artichoke still there in Watsonville? Their deep fried artichoke hearts were something I would always make a stop for.

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