Penny Book Review: Cannery Row

cannery row dropcaps

If my love for John Steinbeck wasn’t already official following my reading of East of Eden, this book definitely cemented it in my mind.

Oh, you want a drink to go with this? Here’s what you’re gonna do: you’re gonna go to a bar, ask if you can bartend–but only part time, you really don’t need to work more than every once in a while–and then set up a jug beneath the counter. Whenever someone abandons a drink, or just sort of ignores it for too long, dump it into that jug. Make sure no one sees you, but…do it. Do it for the pals back at home.

Then pour yourself a good glass of that alcoholic Suicide beverage and drink up. (You can also choose to just add random glugs of whatever you have sitting at home. Or just get a six-pack of beer, that works too.)

I don’t have too much time to write about all the reasons I loved Cannery Row, and even if I did, I doubt I would know where to start. John Steinbeck is just brilliant. I love his settings, I love his characters. Everything he writes is so down-to-earth and realistic and accessible.

Take, for example, one of my favorite passages in this book, detailing the sorta-main character’s interest in, and then attempt at getting, a beer milkshake (also an option for a pairing beverage). It’s so silly and perfect, and yes, this is a Penny Book Review, so you get what you paid for. Which is, nothing.

Read the book. It’s short, it’s sweet. It will be your gateway drug into the heavier stuff, like, yes, East of Eden by John Steinbeck.

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