Of Mice and Men

Of Mice and Men

Book - 1994
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A controversial tale of friendship and tragedy during the Great Depression

They are an unlikely pair: George is "small and quick and dark of face"; Lennie, a man of tremendous size, has the mind of a young child. Yet they have formed a "family," clinging together in the face of loneliness and alienation.

Laborers in California's dusty vegetable fields, they hustle work when they can, living a hand-to-mouth existence. For George and Lennie have a plan: to own an acre of land and a shack they can call their own. When they land jobs on a ranch in the Salinas Valley, the fulfillment of their dream seems to be within their grasp. But even George cannot guard Lennie from the provocations of a flirtatious woman, nor predict the consequences of Lennie's unswerving obedience to the things George taught him.

"A thriller, a gripping tale . . . that you will not set down until it is finished. Steinbeck has touched the quick." -- The New York Times
Publisher: New York, N.Y., U.S.A. : Penguin Books, 1994.
ISBN: 9780140177398
0140177396
Branch Call Number: FICTION Steinbec John
Characteristics: xxviii, 105 p. ;,20 cm.

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smhgeo422
Aug 20, 2020

In Of Mice and Men, written by John Steinbeck, the two main characters, George and Lennie, undergo a series of struggles but continue to persevere in order to fulfill their dreams of owning land. Lennie, a lazy and unintelligent character who always manages to cause problems, keeps George searching for jobs all over the state of California. Although Lennie proves only to be a hindrance to George, George decides to partner with him because he feels pity towards Lennie. George and Lennie flee from Weed, where Lennie was accused of rape, and head to Soledad with hopes of new luck.

The story is set in the Great Depression. There are many perspectives to analyze in this story. Some may argue that the story was written for hope, whereas others may argue that the story was written to prove the impossibility of the American Dream. In either case, I think that Steinbeck demonstrated his points quite well. Most English teachers say that Steinbeck could not have written the book just to have made one pessimistic statement, so most people do believe that Steinbeck was trying to spark up some hope. I’d say I recommend it to anyone who knows a little bit about America’s history, maybe about ages 12+. I give it a five stars out of five.

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karyn8787
Aug 18, 2020

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck tells the story of two friends and migrant farm workers, George and Lennie. After leaving their old job behind because of some trouble that arose, George and Lennie find themselves working on a farm in Salinas Valley, California. Lennie is a little dim witted and not the brightest bulb in the box but is extremely strong, burly, and is a good farm worker. However, alongside this lack of intelligence, Lennie is immature, ignorant, and does not understand the consequences of his actions. Nevertheless, he has his best friend Geroge to take care of him and hopefully keep him out of trouble. They dream of one day buying their own farm where they can be their own bosses and, in Lennie's case, have bunnies. One day they actually scrounged up enough money to buy that farm and fulfill their American Dream, that is, until their lives crumble around them.
Of Mice and Men is a very powerful book about friendship, ignorance, and sacrifice. We are able to see all the problems George and Lennie face through the lens of both maturity and immaturity, circling back to the age old question of whether ignorance is bliss. In addition, George and Lennie’s friendship is a central part of the story and we often see George making sacrifices and tough, controversial decisions that he thinks will better their lives. Of Mice and Men is an incredibly heart-wrenching yet a story of hope and perseverance. With that said, the story would get boring at times and the overall theme and even plot is relatively common. Even so, Of Mice and Men is one of those literary classics that all should read.

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bshihab
Aug 12, 2020

Of Mice and Men, a novel written by John Steinbeck is set in the Great Depression in California. The main characters, Lennie Small and George Milton are two migrant workers who travel together finding work in California. Lennie is mentally challenged but has a strong physique, while George is clever but weaker than his friend. Because of his mental disabilities, Lennie is fully reliant on George for his survival. Throughout the novel, George and Lennie talk about their dream, which is to settle down and build themselves a farm. In order to achieve this goal, George and Lennie try to find work at ranches, but because of Lennie’s mental problems, they always manage to get in trouble and need to be on the move in order to not get caught. What I enjoyed about this novel was how the novel did a great job of conveying the characters’ emotions. The thing that I didn’t enjoy about the novel was the difficult to understand dialogue since they talked in an old American accent.

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vrohit
Aug 09, 2020

An awesome read and a classic, probably one of the best classics I've ever read. Of Mice and Men is certainly a very sad and genuine novel. It describes the lives of best friends George and Lennie who embark on constant travel to find their purpose and a place to settle down and get a job. Lennie suffers from a mental disability, and Lennie is certainly not able to do everything by himself - so George is always by his side. Lennie is unaware of his strength, and tends to grab things way too hard. It's a very simple story - but no story is enough to show the vows of friendship -- apart from this. You can tell the two main characters love each other. No matter how frustrated or mad George gets -- he takes it out on Lennie sometimes, but he stands up for Lennie through all turmoil and so does Lennie for George in all the ways he possibly could. George even puts himself on the line to save Lennie from people's scorn. But it's not the only lesson learned - the reader can see how not only in the 1930s but even now people with mental disabilities are treated - and how some people respond to difference with pain and not acceptance. It's a significant lesson - people with differences need to be respected, possibly even admired. Steinbeck weaves all these lessons into a realistic story - one with a really sad ending, but one that sparks something in the reader's mind. It tells people they need to take action. It tells people the true meaning of differences. It tells people not everyone's the same, and everyone needs to be respected regardless. A powerful message like this in a classic novel can inspire not only one person but a group of people - us as readers. Steinbeck does an amazing job of accomplishing a true goal of the greater good with a realistic story, and everyone must seize any opportunity passed by them to read this fantastic novel.

ACL_NicholasS Aug 05, 2020

There's a reason why this book is a classic and required reading for most schools. It's short, sweet, whimsical, and heartbreaking. A great way to break into Steinbecks works.

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IshaanGupta30
Jul 22, 2020

Of Mice and Men is set during the Great Depression in America. It follows two workers George and Lennie who are moving from place to place in California in search of a job. Their dream is to own their own piece of land, and along with that Lennie also wants to have his own pet rabbits. George is small, and intelligent but uneducated and Lennie is bulky and strong, but mentally challenged.

I personally loved the dynamic between George and Lennie especially because they are foils of each other. Their journey is attention-grabbing which keeps the readers wanting to read. As the novel progresses, it teaches several morals such as friendship, hope, and a sense of belonging. The ending of the novel is very surprising which is one of the best moments.

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Anirudh_Kannan
Jul 18, 2020

Of Mice and Men is an emotional story following two men who work in a farm. At the beginning of the story we are introduced to the main characters. George, who is nimble, athletic, shrewd, and is generally street smart. Then we are introduced to Lennie, a man who is actually older than George. He is described to have the mind of a child, and it is perceived that he suffers from some sort of mental disorder, although we are never told what it is. We are told that the two men dream of having their own plot of land so that they can "live off the fatta the lan" (famous quote in the story). As the story moves on we see how Lennie gets into a lot of conflicts at the farm they are working at. He gets into a fight with the owner's son, and he seems to have an infatuation for the owner's daughter in law. The rest of the story revolves around whether or not George and Lennie will be able to achieve their dreams.

Steinbeck's use of figurative language makes this a good read especially around the middle to high school level. There is a lot of good use of symbolism and foreshadowing that the readers may be able to pick out if they read closely enough.

a
alexqise
Jul 15, 2020

Geroge Milton and Lennie Small are two adventurers with a big dream. After being on the road for a while, they find work at a small barn. However, Lennie’s simple mind and abnormal strength do not prove to be a great combination as it only leads them into more trouble. Throughout the novel, the dialogue is not too simple as Steinbeck writes out what the characters sound like instead of what they are saying. Despite this slight drawback, Steinbeck’s grim message about isolation and loneliness is clear.

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Potato_Yummy
Jun 29, 2020

Of Mice and Men shows a relationship between George and Lennie. George is skinny but good with words, and Lennie is incredibly strong but foolish and sensitive. George mainly takes care of Lennie since he always gets into trouble. Their dream is to live in a shack and call it home, with animals and living as farmers. When Lennie and George seem to almost reach their dream, everything goes wrong when Lennie’s foolishness causes great consequences. This book was not a favorite but still an enjoyable, quick read. What I disliked about this book is that the book didn’t make me excited or think about what would happen next. What I did enjoy was the book conveys emotions and friendship which was a common theme through the whole story. I would recommend this book for all teens even though it wasn't an exciting read because it shows the importance of existence and loneliness.

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ctonci
Jun 12, 2020

Of Mice and Men is a book about the journey of two ranch workers Lennie and George. Lennie faces mental disabilities which makes their travels difficult, in fact during the time of the Dust Bowl many people were discriminated against because of their mental capacity, skin color, or gender. These discriminations are seen as George and Lennie meet people of color and women in their journey, hearing the stories of different minorities. As George and Lennie go looking for jobs as ranch workers, to fulfill their dream of living independently, Lennie gets them into many unexpected troubles that they have to fix along the way. This book was good because the messages are still relevant today since making a living as a person with mentally disabilities is made harder by society. Although it explores heavy issues, Of Mice and Men is still lighthearted. I’d give this book a 5 out of 5 stars, because it captures the problems of many minorities in the working class and still portrays a beautiful plotline. The age group for this book is 12+ because the issues covered are mature but the vocabulary is not challenging so even younger readers will be able to read with ease.

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Age

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s
smhgeo422
Aug 20, 2020

smhgeo422 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

k
karyn8787
Aug 18, 2020

karyn8787 thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

b
bshihab
Aug 12, 2020

bshihab thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

i
IshaanGupta30
Jul 22, 2020

IshaanGupta30 thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

a
Anirudh_Kannan
Jul 18, 2020

Anirudh_Kannan thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

a
alexqise
Jul 15, 2020

alexqise thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

p
Potato_Yummy
Jun 29, 2020

Potato_Yummy thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

w
white_human_110
Mar 13, 2019

white_human_110 thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

m
madmax011
Feb 26, 2019

madmax011 thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

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white_human_110
Feb 14, 2019

white_human_110 thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 12 and 99

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Quotes

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s
Schoolgurl95
Jun 17, 2017

"A guy needs somebody...to be near him. A guy goes nuts if he ain't got nobody. Don't make no difference who the guy is, long's he's with you.

I tell ya, I tell ya a guy gets too lonely an' he gets sick."

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parnoosh
Jul 15, 2016

"An' I got you. We got each other, that's what."

s
ssk22
Jul 06, 2016

“Just like heaven. Ever’body wants a little piece of lan’. I read plenty of books out here. Nobody never gets to heaven, and nobody gets no land. It’s just in their head. They’re all the time talkin’ about it, but it’s jus’ in their head.”

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Makemoney
Jul 06, 2016

"There is a path through the willows and among the sycamores, a path beaten hard by boys coming down from the ranches to swim in the deep pool, and beaten hard by tramps who come wearily down from the highway in the evening to jungle-up near water."

Laura_X Apr 13, 2015

I got you to look after me, and you got me to look after you, and that's why.

black_penguin_254 Jan 24, 2014

"Guys like us, that work on ranches, are the loneliest guys in the world. They got no family. They don’t belong no place. . . . With us it ain’t like that. We got a future. We got somebody to talk to that gives a damn about us. We don’t have to sit in no bar room blowin’ in our jack jus’ because we got no place else to go. If them other guys gets in jail they can rot for all anybody gives a damn. But not us."

RainbowMunchkin May 24, 2013

"Never mind you. A guy got to sometimes"( Slim117 ).

e
E_Kazan
Dec 18, 2010

"You hadda George, I swear you hadda."

Summary

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m
miinas
Aug 03, 2016

Quick read. Very strange story. It was easy to follow. Surprise ending. I can see the dreams of the hard working men in these times dreaming of a better life. Lennie loved soft things.

s
ssk22
Jul 06, 2016

The compelling story of two outsiders striving to find their place in an unforgiving world. Drifters in search of work, George and his simple-minded friend Lennie have nothing in the world except each other and a dream.

black_penguin_254 Jan 24, 2014

Two migrant workers, George and Lennie, have been let off a bus miles away from the California farm where they are due to start work. George is a small, dark man with “sharp, strong features.” Lennie, his companion, is his opposite, a giant of a man with a “shapeless” face. Overcome with thirst, the two stop in a clearing by a pool and decide to camp for the night. As the two converse, it becomes clear that Lennie has a mild mental disability, and is deeply devoted to George and dependent upon him for protection and guidance. George finds that Lennie, who loves petting soft things but often accidentally kills them, has been carrying and stroking a dead mouse. George angrily throws it away, fearing that Lennie might catch a disease from the dead animal. George complains loudly that his life would be easier without having to care for Lennie, but the reader senses that their friendship and devotion is mutual. He and Lennie share a dream of buying their own piece of land, farming it, and, much to Lennie’s delight, keeping rabbits. George ends the night by treating Lennie to the story he often tells him about what life will be like in such an idyllic place.The next day, the men report to the nearby ranch. George, fearing how the boss will react to Lennie, insists that he’ll do all the talking. He lies, explaining that they travel together because they are cousins and that a horse kicked Lennie in the head when he was a child. They are hired. They meet Candy, an old “swamper,” or handyman, with a missing hand and an ancient dog, and Curley, the boss’s mean-spirited son. Curley is newly married, possessive of his flirtatious wife, and full of jealous suspicion. Once George and Lennie are alone in the bunkhouse, Curley’s wife appears and flirts with them. Lennie thinks she is “purty,” but George, sensing the trouble that could come from tangling with this woman and her husband, warns Lennie to stay away from her. Soon, the ranch-hands return from the fields for lunch, and George and Lennie meet Slim, the skilled mule driver who wields great authority on the ranch. Slim comments on the rarity of friendship like that between George and Lennie. Carlson, another ranch-hand, suggests that since Slim’s dog has just given birth, they should offer a puppy to Candy and shoot Candy’s old, good-for-nothing dog.

RainbowMunchkin May 24, 2013

George Milton and Lennie small have been friends for a long time. Lennie acts like a child.George and Lennie move from place to place looking to find new jobs... There is a conflict between a few people in the book, and in the end George has to make a decision that will be life changing and truly upseting.

Notices

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madmax011
Feb 26, 2019

Coarse Language: some bad language

a
akleung
Jul 23, 2011

Violence: (Mild)

a
akleung
Jul 23, 2011

Coarse Language: This title contains Coarse Language.

h
hur74Vety
Jul 19, 2010

Sexual Content: This title contains Sexual Content.

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