Customer Reviews for

East of Eden

Average Rating 4.5
( 544 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(400)

4 Star

(84)

3 Star

(30)

2 Star

(17)

1 Star

(13)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

24 out of 25 people found this review helpful.

A TIMELSSS CLASSIC!!!

A well-written book, a classic deemed worthy of reading. Steinbeck does a great job of making the piece of literature entertaining. I felt glued to the book many times because the plot would be wonderfully constructed, leading readers on an adventurous journey through t...
A well-written book, a classic deemed worthy of reading. Steinbeck does a great job of making the piece of literature entertaining. I felt glued to the book many times because the plot would be wonderfully constructed, leading readers on an adventurous journey through the lives of the characters in the Salinas Valley.What surprised me the most were the characters in the story. Each individual character had his or her own unique personality. Each person seemed real and true to life. I would be going through the book and start saying to myself "oh this character reminds me of so and so." Plus, the characters are dynamic and many of their personalities are not at the extremes, but instead they have both the good qualities and bad qualities of mankind. I love how I can read into each character and judge him or her through his or her actions. The subtlety in revealing the motives behind each character was astonishing. The way Steinbeck depicted the characters through their dialogue and actions was overwhelming as I soon developed my personal opinion on each character. It made me feel like I was involved in the story itself.
Adding to the amazing characters is in intricate, well-developed story line. The plot was complex in that there were many subplots running through the main action. However, when I was reading, the complexity of the story did not hinder my progression because everything seemed to flow. The story was being pieced together in a rhythmic fashion as one event leads to another. The biblical allusion to Cain and Abel was also a fun thing to locate. After reading the story of Cain and Abel, I would go through the East of Eden and get excited when I would notice the similarity or the differences between East of Eden and the biblical story of Cain and Abel. Steinbeck truly does a fascinating job of weaving his story together. His work is fascinating and artful.
Although the book is rather long, the wonderful characters and amazing plot line makes up for it ten times over. I highly recommend this book to those who appreciate good writing that stays with you for days on end, and then some!

posted by 148617 on October 27, 2008

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Most Helpful Critical Review

2 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

Good narrative

I love stories about sociopaths.

posted by hittite_girl on March 26, 2012

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 1, 2002

    I Hated Steinbeck

    This book frustrated me to no end, and still does. There were some parts that were just painfully bad - clumsy characterizations, heavy handed attempts at life's deep truths, and even one chapter I am almost positive is completely unnecessary. At many points, I hated this book, the narrator, and the author. And yet I still think about this book more than most other books I've read around that time. Maybe it's only because of the sheer size of the novel, but more likely it's the better parts that redeem it a little bit. Sorry if I'm a little short on supporting details. I regard this as a messy, underdeveloped, unfocused, and failed shot at an epic novel by Steinbeck.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 1, 2012

    Will try to finish it

    This was our book club selection. It started so bleakly that I put it down. In deference to John Steinbeck, I will try to finish it, but it will be an act of discipline.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 9, 2003

    slow going

    I found this book to be tedious and dated. I finally ended it all by reading the last chapter and skipping the middle.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted August 13, 2013

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