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"Of Mice and Men" by John Steinbeck

A book review of "Of Mice and Men" by John Steinbeck.
Sjanger:Anmeldelse (bok, film...)Lastet opp:03.06.2008
Tema:Of mice and men
Verktøy:Utskrift   Del på Facebook

Title: Of Mice and Men

Author: John Steinbeck

Published: 1966


The story takes place in California, a few miles south of Soledad. The book is about George and Lennie who are ranch workers. Lennie is a very large and strong, but gentle man with the mind of a child. Lennie works on ranches and travels with George, who looks after him. George was small and quick, dark of face, with restless eyes and sharp, strong features George is Lennie’s friend and finds them work. He looks after Lennie and tries to keep him out of trouble. They both dream of saving enough money to buy their own ranch one day.


The book started both men are at Salinas River, and drink water from it. George and Lennie are on their way to a new ranch to seek jobs, so that they could make money. Because George looks after Lennie, he told him how to act when they meet the boss. He told him to stay quiet, and let George do the talking, and if he got in trouble, he ought to go back to the trees by the river and wait for George. George made Lennie repeat this to himself a couple of times to make sure he remembered it.


When they got to the ranch early in the morning, the met an old man took them to the bunkhouse. The boss come a couple of minutes later. He ask them a few questions, and George answered for both. The boss asked him why Lennie didn’t answer, and George said that he was his cousin. George said that because the boss wouldn’t ask so many questions. The boss seemed to be good, but his son, Curley doesn’t. He didn’t like large people. When Curley saw George and Lennie, he went straight over to them and began to talk to them to get a reason to fight Lennie. Since George did all the talking, Curley didn’t get any reason, but he said that he asked Lennie question, he’d better answer himself. When Curley was gone, the old man, Candy, explained to George that Curley was after big men, and that he had been even worse in the last weeks, after he got married. George thought Curley would be trouble, and he was right.


After a couple of they Curley got angry with Lennie when he thought that he was laughing at him, while Lennie really just was smiling of the thought of a puppy he might would get from Slim. Curley went over to him and, began to hit him. Lennie moved nervously backwards until he hit the wall. Curley hit him in the face again and again. Lennie just covered his face, because George has told him to do nothing. But Curley didn’t’t stop and he hit Lennie in the Stomach and even in his eyes. When Slim tried to help Lennie, george held him back, and George shouted to Lennie: “Get him, Lennie!” Then Lennie grabbed Curley’s fist before it hit him, and held it in his big hand. Curley began to struggle, but he wouldn’t let go his closed fist. George ran over and told him to let go, but Lennie was so terrified now that he wouldn’t let go Curley’s hand. Curley’s face became white and his struggling got weaker, then suddenly Lennie let go. He moved backward and told George that he didn’t mean harm and it was George that told him to do that. Lennie talks about tending rabbits when they dream become truth. George had told that if gets into trouble he won’t let him tend those rabbits. So Lennie asked him if could tend the rabbits after injuring Curley. After this Curley didn’t mess with Lennie.


George told Candy, the old man, about their dream. Candy asked if could do some job on their ranch, like being in kitchen and check chickens. He told him that he got some money because of his hand, and a new rach will cost about 600 dollars, and then they just a few 100 dollars more before they can buy it. George thought about it, and finally he said yes.


Later, Lennie was sitting in the barn with a dead puppy in his hands. George had told him to be careful with petting it too much because it was little. Lennie had pushed his head a little bit to hard. He strokes it and hides it under some hay because he thought that George maybe would be mat at him if he noticed he had killed it. At the moment, Curley’s wife came. Lennie was frightened and he covered the puppy with hay. She asked him what he was hiding, but Lennie ignored the question and told her that George had said to him to stay away from her, because she only going to get him in trouble. But She continued talking and convinced Lennie. She told him about her earlier life, and what she thought about the guy’s on the ranch. Lennie told her about his dream, tending rabbits. He said that he loved to touch soft things, and to stroke them. Curley’s wife told him that she knew what he was talking about. She often strokes her hair herself when she sat in front of the mirror and brushed it, because she thought it was so nice. She let Lennie stroke her hair, she took his hand and lay it on her head.


Lennie’s big and began to stroke her hair. He didn’t stop, when he liked that, and she told him to not mess it up. When she tried to move her head away, he grabbed it. She started screaming, but he didn’t let her hair. Lennie told her to be quite, but she continued screaming and Lennie covered her mouth with his other hand. But she didn’t stop and Lennie got angry. He shook her head and said that she had to stop yelling. He shooked again, then her body suddenly jumped and she lay still. Lennie had broken her neck. When Lennie realised that what he had done, he covered her with hay and ran away to the river George had told him to hide if he got in troubles. When the other people found her body in the barn, Curley ordered everybody to find Lennie and shoot him. George knew where he was and went there with Carlson’s gun to shoot him himself. George found Lennie sitting by the river as he had thought. He sat down and talked a little bit to him, Lennie told him to tell him about their new ranch, before he took out the gun and shot Lennie in the back of his head, so he didn’t feel it.


The author wants to tell that persons can be good friends, but a friend like George must take a hard decision to his friend’s best. He killed Lennie himself instead that he will get more pain by Curley. He knew that Curley and the other men were looking after him with shotguns. And George shot Lennie in his back hand so he didn’t feel anything. George thought that Lennie didn’t deserve the painful death by Curley.


The book is good, but it isn’t my kind of book. The book is hard to read because John Steinbeck has a difficult way of writing and many difficult words. But it is made a film to the book, and that is a film I will recommend. It is a heartbraking story about to friends after all.

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