East of Eden by John Steinbeck
London : William Heinemann Ltd., 1952. First U.K. Edition. Hardcover. 525 pages ; 20 cm. 15 Sterling dust jacket. Very good copy; no underlines or markings within the pages. Satisfaction guaranteed!
John Steinbeck's new novel East of Eden is a tour de force more comparable to The Grapes of Wrath than any of his other works. It is a robust family saga, written with all the verve and gusto of which he is capable, running in time from the Civil War to the First World War and in place from a Connecticut farm to the Californian Valley to which his own forebears first emigrated.
Within the flexible form of this novel there are many flights of beautiful and tender fancy such as he has never before permitted himself. Also, there are scenes of incredible brutality and violence recalling the age-old theme of Cain and Abel.
It is the story of a father, his twin sons and their mother, who is probably the most vile and wicked character to appear in any of his novels.
Memorable amongst this host of rich characters is a picture of the wise and humour-loving Irishman, Hamilton, inspired by the memory of his own grandfather. In East of Eden John Steinbeck has epitomised his theme as 'the battle, the balance and the victory in the permanent war between wisdom and ignorance, light and darkness, good and evil'.
"... a story to warm the cockles of your heart and also one to chill the marrow of your bones. . . . Mr. Steinbeck's wisest and richest and happiest book." LEWIS GANNETT, New York Herald Tribune
"John Steinbeck has grown in his respect for his fellow human beings, in his understanding of them. He has reached mature and thoughtful conclusions about them. And he has expressed his conclusions in interesting and thought-provoking fashion." ORVILLE PRESCOTT, New York Times
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